A screening of the 2018 film “The Hate U Give” was held Wednesday in the Student Union Theater, followed by a panel discussing themes of racism and police brutality against black people in America.
The film is based on Angie Thomas’ novel of the same name, which is about a young black woman who witnesses a police officer kill a young black man for wrongfully assuming he was reaching in his car for a gun.
Roughly 30 students gathered in the theater to watch the film, with free copies of the book given to the first 10 students to arrive.
Madison Gonzales went to the screening because she is currently reading the book in her English literature class.
“I had wanted to see the film when it first came out so I figured I might as well watch it and read it at the same time,” Gonzales said.
Gonzales noted films like “The Hate U Give,” which are thematically about structural racism in the U.S., should be shown at UConn.
“I think that representation and promotion of the problems we’re having are just as important as climate justice or anything else,” Gonzales said.
In light of the recent event on campus where two students shouted racial slurs, students in attendance agreed showing films like this is important.
Isaiah Preyer, a sixth-semester electrical engineering major, shared how the themes of the film relate to his life.
“I haven’t seen the movie but I thought the panel afterward would be interesting, talking about topics of race is important to me because I am a minority,” Preyer said. “So it’s very important to talk about these subjects and even though I’m not necessarily a social science major, I’m an electrical engineering major, I still want to be involved in the conversation.”
Preyer also said that given the recent racial incident that occurred on campus, the screening was important and timely.
“The most important part is educating people on campus about these issues,” Preyer said. “Some people are ignorant to it but I think that the best way to combat that ignorance is to obviously educate about topics of race.”
Students applauded once the end credits appeared on screen. Those who wanted to stay were given the chance to discuss their thoughts on the film and the themes it brought up.
One student who spoke appreciated the way the film showed not only overt racism but microaggression, as well. More copies of the book were handed out to students who participated in the discussion.
A major theme was about the negative impact hate spreads. The title of the film is a reference to rapper Tupac Shakur’s T.H.U.G L.I.F.E tattoo, which Tupac said means, “The hate u give little infants f***s everybody.”
Thumbnail photo courtesy of @thehateugivemovie Instagram.
Edison Escobar is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.