March 13, 1985

Third World Coalition Protest

On March 13, 1985, over 300 students rallied on the Green to protest institutional racism at Brown. Five weeks of protests followed, led by the Third World Coalition. Students protested that the University had not followed through on commitments made after the occupation of University Hall in 1975. Citing progress made in the intervening decade, the administration pledged to bolster minority hiring, to find a new home for the Third World Center, to address charges of harassment of African American students by campus security, to explore issues of Third World subject matter in the curriculum and to form an investigatory panel on minority issues at the University. While the protests, which had peaked with an occupation of the John Carter Brown Library to reclaim documents of the Brown family’s slave-trading past, were over, concerns about equitable admissions policies continued.