Longing for Mayberry: How Cultural Ideals Serve as Weapons of Exclusion
Reggie L. Williams, PhD

Professor of Christian Ethics
McCormack Theological Seminary

Co-presented with

Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation

Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - 4:00pm
Presented Online
Free, Registration Required

Historically, talk of an ideal community includes stated, or unstated, reference to ideal neighbors, ideal people for an ideal community. Such talk includes appeals to nostalgia, as seen in the fictional idyllic 1960s television town of Mayberry. The ideals look innocent on the surface, but they are arranged according to a cultural template that actually gives license to exclude and to do harm to people who do not resemble the template.  Reggie Williams is Professor of Christian ethics at McCormick Theological Seminary, in Chicago, Illinois. He does work at the intersection of black theology, blackness studies, aesthetics, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer studies.

Co-presented with Truth Racial Healing and Transformation

Register for a Racial Healing Circle or Affinity Group Sharing as a part of the event here.


Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation (TRHT) is a nationally recognized, community-based initiative for racial justice.  Dominican was named as a TRHT Campus Center in 2020.  

The Sinsinawa Dominican sisters built what is now Dominican University in accord with the four pillars of their lives: prayer, study, community, and service. Dedicated to caring and truth, Dominican University fosters learning through study, self-reflection, dialogue, encounter, and discernment. We affirm the human dignity of each person and uphold a deep commitment to the common good. Our mission – to prepare students to pursue truth, give service, and participate in the creation of a more just and humane world – calls us to stand in solidarity with those who resist social inequality and racial injustice and to dismantle the false belief in a hierarchy of human value, a belief that has been a harmful part of our history, institutions, systems of government, and social norms.  
The Dominican Community will resist white supremacy and challenge racist ideas, policies, and practices without rancor or recrimination. Through dynamic and ongoing partnerships with the communities we serve, Dominican will empower students, faculty, staff, and members of our communities to eliminate racial and ethnic bias and heal from their harmful, long-lasting effects.  
The Dominican TRHT Campus Center is a hub for innovative programs and effective coalitions that empower students, staff, and faculty to eliminate racial inequities on our campus and in our communities. TRHT will promote a greater understanding of the global history of racial oppression, take action to eliminate its effects, and strive to transform the world.