Mission and Vision

Ever wondered how to build a bridge between research and action for racial and social justice? This short video, produced by Kertis Creative, tells the story of the University of Louisville Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research and how we're doing just that.


Anne Braden speaking at a podium

In a sense, the battle is and always has been a battle for the hearts and mind of white people in this country. The fight against racism is not something we’re called on to help people of color with.  We need to become involved as if our lives depended on it because, in truth, they do.” —Anne Braden

The Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research, a program within the University of Louisville College of Arts and Sciences, was founded to honor the work and legacy of longtime racial justice organizer, educator and journalist Anne Braden. We seek to advance public understanding of the U.S. civil rights movement, both its powerful history and its unfinished agenda of racial and social justice. The Institute was established in November 2006 by the University of Louisville Board of Trustees. We opened officially on April 4, 2007. Our Reading Room is located in Ekstrom Library, Room 258.


Our mission is to bridge the gap between academic research and community activism for racial and social justice. To do so, we stimulate and support initiatives and programs that cultivate dialogue and cooperation between scholarship and activism.  Inspired by the work of longtime racial justice organizer, educator and journalist Anne Braden, we focus on the modern African American freedom movement, other modern peace and social justice movements, and the intersections among racial, economic, gender, and wider social justice.


Our vision is that scholarship and activism inform and strengthen each other and sustain social justice locally, regionally, nationally and globally.


Because the institute’s work grows out of U.S. history, with its legacy of white supremacy, we see race/racism as central elements in all aspects of social justice in the United States.  Our work aims at uncovering those connections and at the successful bridging of racial divides, with a special focus on the Louisville community and the U.S. South.