Coalition for Community Writing

Conference on Community Writing Philadelphia October 17-19 2019

Panel: Literacy as Community Building: Collective Thinking to Get Things Done

Presentation – Our Lives Matter: An Online Writing Movement

The Our Lives Matter Project that began as a free writing assignment in an FYC classroom at Baruch College, has grown into an online writing “movement” that embodies the idea that we can improve society when we develop the individual as well as when we form a coalition of very different people with perhaps different agendas, yet with a common goal of liberation and social uplift. Currently, this search for collaboration, meaning, and identity is essential as we strive to make a positive difference in a fractured society. The online website Our Lives Matter encourages students to ask themselves a simple, yet, very complex question: Why does my life matter? In the 21st century, understanding why our lives matter is no less essential than it was during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960’s. In this online composing effort, we encourage students to post freely about why their lives matter so that they can affirm their power, as well as resist political, cultural, and social erasure by expressing in writing that their lives do indeed matter.

It is our hope that writing instructors throughout CUNY and nationwide will join us in this collaborative effort. If you are interested in becoming part of this movement, contact me at

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