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The Student News Site of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts

The Online Beacon

The Online Beacon

The Online Beacon

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A Preview of Tamar Sarai’ Hardman Journalist in Residence Lecture

Photo of Tamar Sarai
Photo of Tamar Sarai

On Monday, April 8th, at 6:00 pm, journalist Tamar Sarai will be visiting MCLA in order to deliver a lecture to students and faculty in the atrium of the Center for Science and Innovation (CSI) building. This lecture will be free and open to the public. 

She will be doing this lecture as a part of MCLA’s ongoing Hardman Lecture Series, which is an annual event the school puts on for students who are interested in journalism so that they can learn more about the different journalistic styles of people who have found success and have undergone real experiences in the field of news media. 

In the past, the Hardman Lecture Series has seen other journalists coming in to speak to the students such as Caleb Gayle (an award winning journalist with a focus on race/identity), Bob Davis (a writer working for The Wall Street Journal), and Scott Dikkers (founder of the hit satire newspaper/website titled The Onion). 

Now, Sarai is coming in with a fire in order to share her insights and to offer her perspective on the work that she does from day to day, with the hopes of igniting a passion in young journalists’ hearts so that they will continue to pursue their journalistic desires. 

To give an idea of who Sarai is as a journalist, currently, she is working as a feature writer for a nonprofit media outlet known as Prism, located in Philadelphia. Her stories focus on race, culture, and the criminal justice system.

More specifically, she often writes about how incarcerated people are negatively affected by the harsh prison systems in place in the United States. 

Sarai writes with a passion and a vigor that bleeds through into her stories, and there is no question as to whether or not she cares about the issues she is writing about. 

A few notable articles she has written recently have titles such as Prisons Control Incarcerated People’s Relationships and Their Access to Intimacy, University of Pennsylvania-led Medical Experiments Harmed Incarcerated Women, and State Officials Deny Incarcerated People the Ability to See Monday’s Historic Eclipse. 

All of these articles share the similarity of being written about incarcerated people: further, they all stand up and create a voice for a group of people who have no real way to advocate for themselves. This type of journalism is called “movement journalism.” 

As could possibly be inferred from the description of Sarai’s work, movement journalism is a type of journalism that hones in on issues of social change and liberation from oppression. 

Utilizing movement journalism, Sarai is a constant advocate for the rights of incarcerated people. Just because people have been put behind bars does not mean that they should be thrown away and forgotten, and this is a belief she hammers home with each new article she writes.

By continuing to write about the experiences of incarcerated people, Sarai disallows people from simply casting them aside and pretending they don’t exist once they are locked away. The injustices they face are not left unsaid.

Chloe Golebiewski ‘25, copy editor and one of the head staff members for The Beacon here at MCLA, was the person who chose Sarai as the speaker for this branch of the Hardman Lecture Series. 

When asked why she thought Sarai would be a good fit, Golebiewski had this to say: “I chose Tamar because she cares about serious issues in the world. Not only does she care, but she puts her all into these pieces she writes.” 

Continuing, Golebiewski also mentioned, “Tamar really cares about the impact of prison systems on women, and I think she writes thought-provoking articles. I think everyone can take something away from what she has to say.”

Students of all types are encouraged to come see the lecture tomorrow evening, and all of them will certainly be welcomed so that they can learn more about movement journalism, and even about other types of journalism as well. 

Sarai has a clear voice that rings throughout each of the articles she writes, and for this reason, she will make for a qualified speaker talking about the ins and outs of movement journalism, writing about incarceration, and the journalistic field itself. 

Feel free to come check out Sarai’s lecture as a part of the ongoing Hardman Lecture Series tomorrow night at 6:00 in the CSI atrium.

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Ainslie Lafko, Staff Writer

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