Our Values

  • Sankofa: We gaze through the lens of Black, Indigenous, and Brown activists who reconstructed the political and social landscape with their justice-affirming frameworks and practices. We look back for insights to help us make meaning of our world today and to propel us forward, together.
  • *Love and Rigor: We practice deep rigor, and we do so with care and empathy. We love our people and communities enough to invite them into spaces of deep learning, dialogue and reflections. In these spaces, we aim to interrogate the norms and ideas that have shaped us, discard the ones that are not affirming, and create new ones that are.
  • Dialogic: We recognize that people are coming into Colorlines with varied perspectives that are shaped by their worldviews and lived experiences. We believe that when people with different positions commit to deeply engaging each other through deep learning, storytelling and dialogue, something more powerful emerges.
  • Narrative Power: Whether we are conscious or not, stories shape the lens in which we see ourselves and the world around us, and inform the actions we take from our perceptions. Narrative is real power. We build narrative power.
  • Collective Power: Structural racism cannot be dismantled by individual efforts alone. To achieve a just, multiracial democracy, we need the power that is only harnessed through connected and aligned networks of people, organizations, and movements.

Learn more about the people who have shaped us

*The phrase “love and rigor” was created by Elsa A. Ríos, Principal of Strategies for Social Change. It provides the avenue to do some reflection and sensemaking, with the intention of wanting to “call in” our beloveds.

“The People Who Shaped Us” Colorlines Lineage collage by Davon Howard. Pictured: bell hooks, Toni Morrison, Grace Lee Boggs, Emory Douglas, Juan Evans, Cicely Tyson, Harriet Jacobs.

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