A Brief History of Oppression and Resistance

(July 2023) LEGACY Information - This page is not maintained or updated. The topics and resources below are legacy and not necessarily current in the course. The current and maintained topics and resources are (only) found in the Blackboard courses for MSW students (SOWK 690) and Faculty/Staff/PhD students (SSW Pre-Requisites). 

This document contains an outline of the topics and core resources included in the prerequisite course, A Brief History of Oppression and Resistance. Please note that many additional images and interactive features can be found in the course itself. The full course is available to all students, staff, and faculty at the School of Social Work. If you need support accessing the course, please contact the IDEA Team.

The course is divided into four Modules: Module 1 offers an overview of Baltimore today. Module 2 delves into some of the historical forces that have created and impacted oppression in Baltimore. Module 3 explores both historic and current resistance efforts to combat and dismantle oppression, with some national resistance efforts that provide context. Each of these first three modules also include a section depicting these aspects in Montgomery County. Module 4 emphasizes ways in which we can work to end oppressive forces and engage alongside those with whom we work in resistance efforts as social workers. In addition, it provides some foundational concepts and contexts that social work students should know entering the program.

Topics and resources are outlined below (and organized by module). Please note that we've copied some of the framing for students, but we encourage you to take a look at how each resource is situated in the course by visiting that section, as, in this format, these links are missing their full context. If you have additional questions, you can contact the Course Coordinator, Samantha Fuld (samantha.fuld@ssw.umaryland.edu) or the Instructional Designer for this course, Ashlie Sarsgard (ashlie.sarsgard@ssw.umaryland.edu).

Table of Contents  (please click the linked headings/subheadings below to be taken to the corresponding list of resources)

Course Welcome and Introduction

Accessibility Resources

+ Instructions regarding keyboard accessible navigation for specific features of the course: Rise 360: Keyboard Accessible Navigation

+ Kurzweil 3000 assistive technology tool (for screen reading and sensory learning assistance): Center for Information Technology Services: Kurzweil

+ UMB Office of Educational Support and Disability Services (ESDS)

Land Acknowledgement

+ UMB Writing Center land acknowledgement, created in partnership with Mario Harley of the Piscataway Nation Council: Land Acknowledgement

Module 1: Baltimore Today

1.1 Anchors of the City

Inner Harbor

+ Read this article from Baltimore Magazine that details some of the history of the Inner Harbor's development and existence: Troubled Waters


Anchor Institutions

UMB Community Engagement Center

+ Explore the ODEI website, which will help you become familiar with the key DEI programs and initiatives at the SSW, the history of both oppression and resistance at the SSW, and the resources that exist to help create a community at the school in which everyone feels a sense of community and belonging: Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

+ Take a look at this timeline on the History of Anti-Oppression and Anti-Racism at the SSW, which was created by students and alumni in the SSW's Anti-Oppression Work Group and published in The Disruptor: History of Anti-Oppression and Anti-Racism at SSW

World-Class Medical Facilities

(Please note that there are only optional resources for the topic, "World-Class Medical Facilities." See the course itself for the description of how this topic is pertinent in Baltimore today.)

1.2 Employment and Industry

Domino Sugars

+ Watch this short video clip from 2014 about the Domino Sugars manufacturing plant: Baltimore's Domino Sugar, a Major Maryland Manufacturer

+ Hear from Coricka White, who in 2021 became the first Black woman to lead Domino Sugars' Baltimore factory: Coricka White Makes History as the First Black Woman to Manage Baltimore's Domino Sugar in Its Near 100-Year-History

Squeegee Workers

+ This Baltimore Magazine article discusses the history and evolution of city policies and programs impacting squeegee workers, including some of these workers' perspectives on why and how they navigate this work, which for many is a critical livelihood: Coming Clean

+ Watch this short video from local news station WMAR discussing a current city initiative to support squeegee workers, and some of their reactions to these efforts: Changes for squeegee boys in Baltimore City

Bethlehem Steel

+ Read this article from CityLab illustrating some of the history of Bethlehem Steel and the current impact on the Dundalk Community: In Baltimore, Visions of Life After Steel

Adult Entertainment Workers

+ Read this article in the Spring 2016 issue of the Johns Hopkins Public Health Magazine for an account of a research study on exotic dancers in the Baltimore area and the seeds of an intervention program that grew out of it: Dancing with Danger


+ Watch this short video from Great Big Story about the tradition of Baltimore arabbers: The Horse and Buggy Fruit Sellers of Baltimore


+ Watch this clip from Good News Baltimore, which provides further details about the culture of arabbing and the work that arabbing entails: GNB Episode 1: Inside Baltimore

+ Watch this news story from WJZ that documents some of the food distribution efforts by arabbers during COVID-19: Baltimore's Arabbers Help Distribute Food to Those in Need

1.3 Culture and Community

Cultural Celebrations

+ View these photos of the parade that took place during the 2021 Latino Cultural Festival/Hispanic Heritage Festival: Hispanic Heritage Festival Photos

+ Watch this 2019 video that illustrates the AFRAM celebration: Baltimore AFRAM Festival Promotes African American Culture

Underground Arts and Music Scene

+ Read the introduction to this article on the BMore Art website and scroll through the descriptions of the different art spaces: Artist-Run: Ten Alternative Baltimore Art Spaces

+ Read the introduction to this article from Baltimore Magazine that covers the Baltimore music scene: The Music Issue - 50 Artists to Know Right Now

The Baltimore Club Scene

+ This article about Miss Tony depicts the style of music that Baltimore Club entails and provides some insight on the scene: Joy, Riots, Resilience: The Life of Baltimore Club Legend Miss Tony and the Death of Freddie Gray

+ Watch this Blaqstarr video for the song "Hands Up Thumbs Down" that pictures dancing, scenes from the city, and an appearance from the 12 O'Clock Boys: 

+ Watch the trailer for the documentary Dark City Beneath the Beat, by TT the Artist, that delves into the Baltimore Club scene:

Neighborhood Bars

+ This 2018 article discusses some of the common controversy surrounding liquor licensing: Communities Call on Pugh and Young to Crack Down on Liquor Board

Indoor Markets

+ Take a look at the Baltimore Public Markets Corporation's About page for a general overview; then, explore the different markets through the drop-down list found under "Markets" in the top navigation menu: Baltimore Public Markets — About Us

+ Located just a few blocks from the School of Social Work, Lexington Market is undergoing a large-scale renovation. Read this article about the renovation for insight into the project and some of the concerns surrounding gentrification and community involvement: Baltimore Public Markets — About Us

+ You can explore information about the renovation project on the Lexington Market website, Transform Lexington, including the design plans for the market: Baltimore Public Markets — About Us

Religious Communities and Institutions

+ Ted Koppel interviews Reverend Derrick DeWitt about his church's role in supporting the Sandtown neighborhood of West Baltimore during the COVID-19 pandemic: Overcoming COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy

+ The Muslim Social Services Agency has played an important role in supporting the Baltimore community with food drives in the midst of COVID-19. This news report provides insight into these efforts: Muslim Social Services Help Hungry Families

+ The Islamic Society of Baltimore, provides spaces for community gathering and support, including interfaith outreach efforts to combat bias, discrimination, and Islamophophia: Islamic Society of Baltimore

+ The Associated: Jewish Federation of New York's Baltimore City Partnerships Commission, founded in 2020, seeks to address systemic and structural racial injustice in Baltimore: Baltimore City Partnerships Commission Building Upon Associated’s Social Justice Agenda

+ Read about the Baltimore Jewish Community Task Force’s plan to combat antisemitism here: In the Face of Antisemitism, Baltimore Makes a Call for Action

+ The Associated also works together with the Baltimore Jewish Council and the Anti-Defamation League to track incidents of antisemitism in Baltimore. If you have experienced or witnessed an incident of antisemitism, you can report it here: Report an Antisemitic Incident

+ To learn more about the existing Baltimore churches founded by the members of the Lumbee Tribe, please watch the short video at the beginning of this article: Native Americans Reflect on Long, Strong History in Baltimore

1.4 Social Determinants of Health

Rat Infestations

+ This article from ProPublica discusses the conversation that ensued around landlords and housing after former President Trump and late U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings's 2019 feud: Trump Called Baltimore "Vermin Infested" While the Federal Government Fails to Clean Up Rodents in Subsidized Housing 

Lead Poisoning

+ This 2016 CityLab article considers some of the circumstances surrounding lead poisoning in cities and the obstacles inhabitants face: Why Lead Paint Still Haunts Industrial Cities in the U.S. 

Food Deserts

+ Read this 2017 article on Governing.com about Freishtat's policy initiatives: Food Deserts and the Policy Power of Maps

+ View this web page for information about how Baltimore City defines a food desert. Note that in 2018, Baltimore City changed its terminology from Food Deserts to Healthy Food Priority Areas, a shift they explained as better capturing the lack of adequate healthy fresh food options within a particular area (though some food access may exist): Mapping the Food Environment

+ View the Maryland Food System Map created by Baltimore City and the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future: Maryland Food System Map 

Opioid Epidemic and Treatment

+ This 2019 Vox article that illustrates the impact of the opioid crisis on the city: The Opioid Epidemic is Increasingly Killing Black Americans. Baltimore is Ground Zero.

+ The following commentary discusses the history of methadone maintenance therapy (MMT) and the common myths and stigmas associated with it: Commentary: Countering the Myths about Methadone

1.5 Baltimore City Government and Infrastructure

City Hall Government

+ Mayor Brandon Scott speaks to UMB SSW students about oppression and trauma-informed healing in Baltimore

Deteriorating Infrastructure

+ This 2016 article from WYPR that outlines some of the history surrounding Baltimore’s deteriorating sewage system: Baltimore's Fight Against Sewage Spills, 14 Years and Counting

+ This page on the Baltimore Office of Sustainability's website that offers a quick overview of the impact of climate change on the city, including city infrastructure: Baltimore & Climate Change


+ Read about the Red Line on the Baltimore City website, where project documents regarding the Red Line also may be found: Red Line Project Overview

Development and Tax Increment Financing

+ Learn about the original plans and tax controversies surrounding Port Covington: Port Covington Redevelopment Examined

City Schools

+ Read this 2021 Op-Ed in The Baltimore Sun by SSW alum Frank Patinella, who is an SSW Alum and works for the ACLU's Education Reform Project, to better understand some of these dynamics: Blame State Inaction for the Condition of Baltimore Schools

+ This article from Baltimore Magazine, written before the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future was passed, explains the work of the Kirwan Commission: Kirwan Commission Bill Aims to Set Higher Education Standards for Maryland

+ Read this article from the Baltimore Brew regarding the issues plaguing city school buildings: Cold, Hard Truths About Baltimore's Crumbling City Schools

1.6 The Black Butterfly and the White L

The Black Butterfly and the White L

+ Baltimore has many nicknames, each of which exposes a different and often contrasting side to the city. Read more about this here: Are We Still Charm City?

+ This interactive website features image maps from the Urban Institute depicting data related to race, poverty, real estate, and investment in different areas of the city: "The Black Butterfly": Racial Segregation and Investment Patterns in Baltimore

Images of Baltimore

+ Read this article on the PBS website from Lee Gardner, the former editor of the Baltimore City Paper from 2002-12: What The Wire Got "Right" and "Wrong" About Baltimore (and How "Charm City" Fills in the Rest)

+ The Preakness, another common symbol that many associate with "Charm City" Baltimore, also represents the tension inherent in the racial and socioeconomic segregation of the city. Read more about it here: A Black Neighborhood's Complicated Relationship with the Home of the Preakness

Vacant Homes and Gentrification

+ This brief CityLab article explores some of the issues with the unstated dynamics present in a term like "blight," used to describe neighborhoods that have been underserved and most often systematically ignored: The Meaning of Blight

+ This 2017 Washington Post article about a block on North Bradford Street for an illustration of a block being demolished and the changing occupants over its lifespan: This Historic Baltimore Block was Going to Disappear Forever. So We Raced to Tell its Story https://medium.com/@washingtonpost/how-we-told-the-story-of-one-historic-baltimore-block-before-it-disappeared-forever-baa30f9e0ef5

+ Read the first half of this article, which discusses the expansion of Johns Hopkins in East Baltimore and the resulting ramifications: Gentrify or Die? Inside a University's Controversial Plan for Baltimore

1.7 Critical Social Equity Issues


+ Though the city is currently working to implement an Action Plan to address homelessness, there is a history that cannot be ignored of the city clearing encampments without much warning. Action Plan on Homelessness

+ This article from the Baltimore Brew, details some viewpoints about the city's approach to homelessness: Evicted from MLK Blvd. Encampment, Homeless Say They Have Nowhere to Go 

Gun Violence and the Loss of Lives

+ This article offers a look at the complicated issue of gun violence in Baltimore. It also discusses the 2021 murder of Dante Barksdale, a prominent Baltimore activist and advocate for community solutions to address gun violence: The Violence Interrupter in the Mayor's Office

+ This 2019 article provides more context to gang-related homicide and violence, especially among youth in Baltimore: "Baltimore's Different": Gangs, Youth, And Stopping Violence

Police Corruption of the Consent Decree

+ Read the following webpage and article to learn about the Consent Decree and the Department of Justice report that prompted its adoption: City of Baltimore Consent Decree

+ This clickable overview from the Baltimore Sun details the outcomes of the various charges associated with the Gun Trace Task Force that in part prompted the Consent Decree: Gun Trace Task Force Overview 

Police Brutality

+ This 2015 article in The Atlantic, discusses a culture of police brutality: The Brutality of Police Culture in Baltimore

+ This feature from NPR interviews Ray Kelly, a community organizer in West Baltimore, regarding policing in Baltimore communities five years after Freddie Gray's death: Freddie Gray's Death, 5 Years Later

Preschool to Prison Pipeline

+ Efforts are underway by groups such as the Positive Schools Center (which is part of the SSW's Social Work Community Outreach Service) to move from a discipline-focused framework to restorative practices and a trauma-informed approach in city schools.

+ A 2015 report from the Center for American Progress provides important data and context for how minority children as young as pre-schoolers are disciplined in schools in such a way that it primes them for the juvenile justice system and, eventually, prison: The Preschool to Prison Pipeline

+ This article from Think Progress on police presence in Baltimore schools, offers insights about the context in which arrests may be made: The Criminalization Of Baltimore Students, Explained

+ This brief 2017 article from the Baltimore Fishbowl about the State's new youth detention facility on Greenmount Avenue offers additional consideration of the concerns surrounding youth arrests: $35 Million Youth Detention Facility to Open in Baltimore

Prison Industrial Complex

+ The University System of Maryland is mandated by state law to maintain a contract with Maryland Correctional Enterprises, an entity that relies on virtually unpaid labor. To understand more about this relationship and its history, read this Call To Action posted in The Disruptor: A Call to Action: Prison Labor and the University of Maryland

+ Watch President Obama interview The Wire's creator, David Simon, for insight into how the prison industrial complex impacts communities in a city like Baltimore: Watch President Obama Interview The Wire Creator David Simon

1.8 Montgomery County Today

Demographics: A Brief Overview

(Please note that there are only optional resources for the topic, "Demographics: A Brief Overview" See the course itself for the description of how this topic is pertinent in Montgomery County today.)

Key Issue: Policing in Public Schools

+ These two news stories offer some context around police presence in Montgomery County Schools and the implications for racial inequality:

Montgomery County considers modifying police presence in schools

Controversy surrounding SROs rises in Montgomery County

Key Issue: Immigration

+ Organizations like Ama Tu Vida: Latino Health Initiative provide services and supports to help reunite families after often long periods of separation and trauma associated with migration.

+ This article illuminates immigration in Montgomery County, one of the key locations where people pursuing asylum connect with family and seek refuge: Montgomery County leaders prepare for a surge of migrant children as border crisis intensifies 

Community Spotlight

+ Watch the following video with Olgalidia Rosas, an alum of the School of Social Work and a social worker in Montgomery County. Community Spotlight videos highlight the voices, contributions, and perspectives of people working in and making change in the Baltimore and Montgomery County communities.

Optional: Additional Cultural Aspects of Baltimore Today

Baltimore Ravens

+ Watch the brief newscast below to see the city "painted purple" to show its love for the Ravens.

​Camden Yards

+ Watch the first few minutes of Baltimore Orioles game coverage as Gary Thorne and Jim Palmer discuss the decision to close Camden Yards to fans after several days of unrest following the death of Freddie Gray.

College Town

1807 - University of Maryland, Baltimore 

+ Feel free to peruse the "UMB Fast Facts" information page if you have not seen it, for information about the university's vision and reach, including the degrees it awards, historical highlights, and engagement with the community: UMB Fast Facts

1826 - Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)

+ For a short description of the design and history of the main building, see this page on the MICA website: Main Building — 1300 West Mount Royal Avenue

1852 - Loyola University Maryland

+ Loyola's mission as a service university is evident in its work with the York Road Partnership. Read this article and consider the work the school and its students have been doing  with neighboring communities impacted by COVID-19: Loyola’s York Road Initiative Provides Support to Baltimore Community During Pandemic

Crab Feasts and Crabcakes

Baltimore School for the Arts


Natty Boh

Arts Institutions

Module 2: History of Oppression

2.1 Baltimore: How We Got Here 

Please note that for many of the topics in Module 2, the descriptions of the topics are what is required for students. You will find these by logging into the course itself. There are currently 11 required resources in the list of Module 2 topics below for you to peruse.

The Enduring Theme of Plundering: An American Legacy

Port of Baltimore: Historical Facts

Colonial Settlers

Immigrant Experience


Immigration Post Civil War (post 1865)

Slavery, Forced Labor, and Bondage

Maryland as a Border State

Location and Industry

Transportation Network Innovations

Manufacturing and Industries

Critical Event: The Great Baltimore Fire

+ This video from Baltimore Heritage documents some of the history of the fire here: Five Minute Histories: The 1904 Fire

A Growing City

Baltimore Seals Its Borders

+ Read this article from Baltimore Magazine for further insights into the 1948 referendum [Question 5] that prevented Baltimore City from annexing additional land and its impact: 100 Years: Baltimore Seals Its Borders

Housing and Development

Baltimore: "City of Firsts" - First to Implement De Jure Race Discrimination

+ This article, published in The New York Times on December 25, 1910, details what prompted Baltimore's Residential Segregation Ordinance of 1910 and conveys some of the context of its passage: Baltimore Tries Drastic Plan of Race Segregation 

Overcrowding and Inequities

Zoning Codes

+ Read the following article from the Baltimore Sun to learn about the Roland Park Company's covenant for their Guilford and Homeland neighborhoods, established in 1913 and 1924 respectively: 1893 Letter Details Racially Restrictive Covenants in City Neighborhoods

+ The following Washington Post article illuminates the inter-generational impact of racially segregated investment and disinvestment in Baltimore: The Long, Painful and Repetitive History of How Baltimore Became Baltimore

Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944: "G.I. Bill"

+ Read this article for more context as well as additional implications of the G.I. bill: How African American WWII Veterans Were Scorned by the GI Bill

White Flight

Development of the Suburbs

+ Watch this video from Adam Ruins Everything for an explanation of redlining as it relates to the suburbs:

Block Busting

A Thriving Employment Hub

Industrial Legacy

Class Matters


The Dubious Role of Highways in Both the Investment and Disinvestment of Baltimore City

Transit Matters

Other Factors

Crime and Policing

“War on Drugs”

+ View this video from the Drug Policy Alliance, "A History of the War on Drugs: From Prohibition to Gold Rush," written and narrated by Jay-Z, with animated drawings by Molly Crabapple.


+ This article from Slate details some of the history of the Rosewood Center, formerly known as the Maryland Asylum and Training School for the Feeble Minded: A Forgotten Scandal in Baltimore's High Society 

2.2 A Brief History of Oppression in Montgomery County

Community History

+ This brief documentary, created by the Montgomery County Council, discusses the history of three predominantly African American communities in the county: Montgomery County Reflections: Honoring Historic African American Communities in Montgomery County, MD 

Segregation and Inequities in Education

+ Like most places in the country, including Baltimore, Montgomery County has a legacy of racial segregation and inequity in its education system. To learn more about this history, please view the following exhibit from Montgomery History: The Effects of Brown vs. Board of Education in Montgomery County 

Optional: Module 1 Supplemental Resources

The following list of supplemental resources for Module 1 are organized by the topics in the Module. Feel free to explore these resources for a deeper consideration of the topics.

1.1 - Anchors of the City

The Inner Harbor

+ For a quick moment of U.S. history, go to the National Park Service website to learn about the USS Constellation's role in fighting the slave trade: Board the USS Constellation

Anchor Institutions

+ This brief article about the history of Johns Hopkins in Baltimore illustrates its reach as an anchor institution: A Brief History of Johns Hopkins University

+ This December 2020 article on the Johns Hopkins University Hub acknowledges new documents revealing a direct connection of its founder to slavery. The article and video both provide details about the discovery and the reconsideration of Johns Hopkins' life: Newly Discovered Documents Prompt Reexamination of the History of University's Founder, Johns Hopkins

+ This article provides insight into how large non-profits such as Hopkins and UMB benefit from their establishment in the city: Advocates Want Nonprofits Including Johns Hopkins to Give Baltimore More Money

World-Class Medical Facilities

+ This 2016 fact sheet provides more information on Shock Trauma: R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center Facts

+ This NPR story highlights racial disparities in access to these world-class medical facilities, which are seen in West Baltimore neighborhoods located right across the street from the UMB campus: In Freddie Gray's Baltimore, The Best Medical Care Is Nearby But Elusive

+ Beyond the facilities and people, Maryland's health care system has a unique policy that impacts the care provided. This article from Vox explains how fixed rates and particular budgeting methods help incentivize Maryland hospitals' performance: The Answer to America's Health Care Cost Problem Might Be in Maryland

1.2 - Employment and Industry

Domino Sugars

+ You can watch this video for insight into the iconic Domino Sugars sign and what it represents: Up Close and Personal with the Domino Sugars Sign

Squeegee Workers

+ You may listen to this WYPR segment with journalist Tom Hall, joined by Dr. Lawrence Brown and former State Senator Jim Brochin, that discusses potential community responses to squeegee workers: Baltimore's Squeegee Kids: Debating How the Community Should Respond

Bethlehem Steel

+ You may read this Baltimore Sun article for information about Tradepoint Atlantic's vision for the Bethlehem Steel site and the companies involved: Old Sparrows Point Steel Mill Sprouts New Businesses, Including a New Kind of Indoor Farm

+ This link takes you to a virtual exhibit at the Baltimore Museum of Industry that explores the experiences of women steel workers in the Bethlehem Steel mill: Women in Steel

+ The Baltimore Museum of Industry has had several exhibits focused on Bethlehem Steel, which you can learn about on this page: Exhibitions

+ This page explains the Baltimore Museum of Industry's Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project: Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project


+ This podcast from Dan Rodricks interviews a senior vice president of Tradepoint Atlantic about the Bethlehem Steel site development: The Massive Redevelopment of the Old Bethlehem Steel Land in Sparrows Point

+ This trailer for the NPR podcast, Sparrows Point: An American Steel Story, paints a picture of the heyday of Bethlehem Steel:

Adult Entertainment Workers

+ This 1986 Washington Post article offers perspectives on The Block from city officials, developers, and those who spent many years on it: Baltimore's Block Gets Cornered

+ This article that appeared in the City Paper in 2000 considers efforts to curb crimes such as prostitution and drug dealing committed in venues on The Block: Around the Block: The Colorful Past, Controversial Present, and Uncertain Future of Baltimore's Red Light District

+ This feature from the April 2020 issue of Baltimore Magazine highlights the SPARC Center (Sex Workers Promoting Action, Risk Reduction, and Community Mobilization), the intervention center opened in Pigtown in late 2017 that was launched from Dr. Sherman's research: Hidden Figures

+ This June 2015 news report offers some details on an FBI raid of The Block: FBI Raids Three Strip Clubs in Baltimore's Block

+ This article from the Baltimore Sun details the perspectives of many dancers who protested the mayor's extended shutdown: Baltimore strip club performers protest COVID restrictions that bar adult entertainment, interrupting City Hall news conference


+ This article from Baltimore Magazine provides additional insights about the role of arabbers during COVID-19: Arabbers' Mission Becomes More Urgent in the Midst of COVID-19 

+ This page on the Arabber Preservation Society's website links to information about the history of arabbing and its decline in Baltimore: Arabber Preservation Society

+ These two short videos provide additional insights into arabber work and culture: 

The Last Arabbers 

Maryland Traditions: Arabbers

1.3 - Culture and Community

Underground Arts and Music Scene

+ This 2017 VICE article illuminates the concerns behind shutterings of DIY and underground venues in Baltimore: Is Baltimore's DIY Art Scene Being Killed Off?

+ This article from Baltimore Magazine describes an addition to Station North's Graffiti Alley: Writing on the Wall

The Baltimore Club Scene

+ This Baltimore Sun article on James Nasty provides additional insights into Baltimore Clubb: The Club Beat with James Nasty

+ This Mixcloud page is a good source for further exploration of Baltimore Club songs: Popular Baltimore House Shows

Neighborhood Bars

+ This message from Koco's pub in the Lauraville neighborhood shares a bit about its long history in the community, and other aspects of being a neighborhood bar: Since 1985 Baltimore's Favorite Neighborhood Bar

+ This article from the Baltimore Brew provides more details about the hearing for the Waverly Tavern, "the northern district's most violent address": Why the Liquor Board Renewed the Tavern License at Northern District's Most Violent Address 

+ The Baltimore Brew's "Liquor Issues" series tracks its articles related to the Liquor Board: Liquor Issues

+ The Booze News blog from Becky Lundberg Witt of the Community Law Center details Liquor Board hearings and looks at licensee inspections conducted under the board. This blog post on the Waverly Tavern shows the lack of proper inspections for the bar, which has since burned down: Booze News 2.0: Waverly Tavern

Indoor Markets

+ The Lexington Market website provides information about the renovation project, including various presentation documents: Transform Lexington

+ Via the link above, you may view documents such as these design plans for the market: Lexington Market UDAAP Design Development Review. You also may view documentation from meetings with the community, such as this presentation: Transform Lexington Market.

Religious Communities and Institutions

+ The below article from 2018 discusses what the Connexion Point Church in Edmondson Village has done to combat violence and fear in their area. 

PLEASE NOTE: This article includes graphic descriptions of gun violence.

No One Wants to Live Like This - Church's Leaders Say.pdf

+ You may view the Baltimore Jewish Community Task Force on Anti-Semitism's plan to combat Anti-Semitism here: Antisemitism Action Plan

1.4 - Social Determinants of Health

Lead Poisoning

+ CityLab features this 2020 article that details the presence of lead in urban environments. Look for the interactive map titled "Baltimore's Toxic Legacy" that shows the percentages of elevated lead results by census tract. Click Start to see the map's features: The Unequal Burden of Urban Lead

+ For in-depth exploration, this WYPR Future City segment discusses the toxic legacy of lead poisoning in Baltimore and nationwide: A Toxic Legacy: Confronting Lead Poisoning in Baltimore

Food Deserts

+ Click here for the 2018 Food Policy Brief from Baltimore City in partnership with the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future: Baltimore City 2018 Food Environment Brief

+ This article from the Baltimore Sun illustrates how a group of activists came together to create emergency food distribution in Cherry Hill during the first few months of the pandemic: Many in Baltimore's struggling Cherry Hill enclave could have gone hungry amid COVID. But a small band of neighborhood activists stepped up.

Opioid Epidemic and Treatment

+ This article about a study of Baltimore crime data from 1999-2001 led by Dr. Susan Boyd at the University of Maryland School of Medicine found that incidents of crime near methadone clinics were on par with crime in general, and in fact lower than crime occurring in the vicinity of convenience stores: Crime Does Not Increase Around Methadone Clinics in Baltimore. An abstract of Dr. Boyd's study can be found here: Use of a 'Microecological Technique' to Study Crime Incidents Around Methadone Maintenance Treatment Centers

+ For further exploration of a campaign to stop deaths from opioid use, see the Go Slow website: goslow.org

+ This Baltimore Brew feature investigates opioid supply and the extraordinary amount of opioid prescriptions that are filled: A Drugstore in Dundalk Learned a Hard Lesson on Opioids

+ This news station report documents a June 2019 cocaine seizure at the Baltimore and Philadelphia ports. The report discusses not only the high volume seized at that time, but the general rise of cocaine deaths in Baltimore due to the drug being laced with the opioid fentanyl: What's Behind The Record-Breaking Cocaine Busts At Baltimore And Philadelphia Ports?

1.5 - Baltimore City Government and Infrastructure

City Hall Government

+ For more information on Mayor Scott, you may read his bio here: https://mayor.baltimorecity.gov/

+ For additional insights into the new city government leadership, view the news conference held by Brandon Scott when he was City Council President after winning the Democratic mayoral primary: Brandon Scott Holds News Conference After Winning Democratic Mayoral Primary

+ You may learn more about the Board of Estimates here: About the Board

Deteriorating Infrastructure

+ This article describes a 2015 investigation by WBAL into the Department of Public Works' backlog of necessary fire hydrant repairs: Fire Hydrant Repair Backlog in Baltimore Shows Concern

+ This article about persistent sewage backups in the city discusses the health and financial impact of aging sewage infrastructure on residents: Sewage in my home and hazardous to my health

+ This article discusses the impact of climate change on Baltimore's infrastructure: Hell and High Water

+ This article illuminates concerns with the city's transit system in light of the issue with sinkholes: A sinkhole and erosion ate a third of Baltimore’s light rail stops. Then people couldn’t find the buses.


+ This Baltimore Sun article discusses city residents' frustrations with the cancellation of the Red Line and has a map of the proposed project: Five years later, many across Baltimore bitterly lament Gov. Hogan's decision to kill the Red Line light rail

+ For further exploration, this 2019 Op Ed offers a perspective on some of the frustrations of using the current Light Rail system: The Problems with the MTA Public Transportation System

+ This article on the Maryland Matters website discusses concerns over the impact that a proposed high-speed Maglev train would have on Baltimore: Baltimore Officials' Rejection of Maglev is Latest Blow for Proposed High-Speed Rail

+ This 2020 piece details a workshop experience learning about Baltimore's public transit infrastructure, including projects such as The Big Jump, an accessible foot, bike, and mobility path across the 28th Street bridge: What I Learned About Baltimore's Public Transit Infrastructure after Six Weekly Classes

Development and Tax Increment Financing

+ This November 2019 article from the Baltimore Sun depicts the first phase of construction in Port Covington:

Finally Work Has Begun - Port Covington Project Underway in South Baltimore.pdf

City Schools

+ This 2018 article is from UMB School of Social Work alumnus Frank Patinella, Senior Education Advocate, Engagement and Mobilization for ACLU Maryland. The image in the article illustrates, using 2012 data, the state of school facilities in the city — showing 68 out of 163 total schools that year in poor condition and 26 additional schools required to close, which together made up over half the number of schools: Baltimore's School Facility Crisis: No Air Conditioning, No Heat, No Excuses

+ For further exploration, this investigation from Education Next looks at past changes in governance of Baltimore City Public Schools as well as factors such as enrollment, achievement, and strategies employed by two recent superintendents: Incomplete Reform in Baltimore

+ See this article from CityLab for additional information about city school facilities and funding: How Baltimore Students Got Left in the Cold

1.6 - The Black Butterfly and the White L

The Black Butterfly and the White L

+ This article on Medium is an excerpt from Kondwani Fidel's book and discusses the "two identities" and his experience as a Black man growing up in Baltimore. Please note that the content is likely to be traumatic: How a young boy has been decaying in Baltimore since age 10: A Death Note

+ This 2020 article regarding West Baltimore discusses benefits and challenges related to equity work in the city: Black West Baltimore is Still Waiting for Equity

Images of Baltimore

+ This clip of the character Detective Kima Greggs saying goodnight to the neighborhood with her son is a post card to Baltimore moment that humanizes and connects individuals in the city: Goodnight Moon, "The Wire" Style

+ View this video to hear David Simon and George Pelekanos discuss the creative approach and decisions in the writing of The Wire: Why The Wire? (HBO)

Vacant Homes and Gentrification

+ This article discusses some of the ineffective attempts by Baltimore City to reduce the number of vacant homes: In 2010, Baltimore had 16,800 Vacants. Eight Years and Millions of Dollars Later, the Number is Down to 16,500

+ This article discusses Baltimore's Vacants to Value program, which promotes rehabbing of vacant houses on specific blocks in the city: To Get Rid of Blight, Baltimore Tries Something New

+ This article provides insight into other concerns regarding tearing down vacant houses: Baltimore Starts Demolition of Block in Sea of Vacant Houses

+ For a visual overview of more Baltimore blocks, look at this photography project on tumblr that documents them: Baltimore: A History, Block by Block

+ This article illuminates concerns about dangers of vacant houses: Family that owns home where firefighters died speaks out for first time, illustrates city’s challenges with vacants

1.7 - Critical Social Equity Issues

Police Corruption and the Consent Decree

+ For further exploration into police corruption concerns and the lives of people selling drugs, read this article from The Guardian: One Drug Dealer, Two Corrupt Cops and a Risky FBI Sting

+ You may download the filing of the Consent Decree here: United States District Court for the District of Maryland — Consent Decree

Police Brutality

+ Although this 2016 article in The Guardian doesn't capture Freddie Grey's death or more recent abuses, it describes three other police brutality cases in Baltimore: A Year After Freddie Gray, Families of Others Killed by Police Still Seek Justice

+ You may also want to explore the Key Findings section of this ACLU report on Maryland deaths as a result of police encounters: Briefing Paper on Death in Police Encounters in Maryland, 2010-2014

+ In April, 2021 the Maryland Legislature voted to override a veto from Governor Hogan introducing significant police reforms. Read more about the legislation and what it will mean for Maryland policing here: Maryland Legislators Pass Landmark Police Reform Package into Law, Overriding Gov. Hogan's Vetoes

Preschool-to-Prison Pipeline

+ Read this article to learn more about disproportionate suspension and arrest rates in schools: Report Shows School Suspension and Arrest Rates Remain Highest for Black Students

+ This article from the New York Times reports on a Coronavirus outbreak in the Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center:

Pacing and Praying - Jailed Youths Seek Release as Virus Spreads.pdf

Prison Industrial Complex

+ This article considers how the Ban the Box legislation enacted in 2020 by the State of Maryland and in Baltimore in 2014 may impact the Baltimore region's recidivism rate (the rate at which individuals re-enter the criminal justice system after being released): Maryland's 'Ban the Box' Law Goes into Effect Soon

+ This article discusses the state's plan to knock down the Baltimore City Detention Center and replace it with a therapeutic facility, still to be part of the system, that treats prisoners and detainees who have addictions: State to Push Forward with $27 Million Demolition of Baltimore Jail — While Saving Some Historic Buildings

+ For a look back and an explanation of the prison industrial complex as it was first termed, read this 1998 article in The Atlantic by Eric Schlosser: The Prison-Industrial Complex

Optional: Module 2 Supplemental Resources

The following list of supplemental resources for Module 2 are organized by the topics in the Module. Feel free to explore these resources for a deeper consideration of the topics.

2.1 - Baltimore: How We Got Here

Port of Baltimore: Historical Facts

Colonial Settlers

+ You can read this article to learn more about the structure of a witchott and the materials used for building one: Home Sweet Witchott

Immigrant Experience

+ This article from the Baltimore Sun details an 1847 arrival of three ships transporting mostly young Irish immigrants, lending insight into the experience of those fleeing Ireland at this time: Irish Immigrants Created a Stir, and Compassionate Response, in 1800s

Other Factors


+ For more context about Dr. Leo Kanner's role in child psychiatry, visit the About Us page of the Johns Hopkins Child and Adolescent Psychiatry division: About us

Additional Video Resources

+ The Five Minutes Histories series from Baltimore Heritage offer many insights into Baltimore's past. You can access the full list of Five Minutes Histories on the Baltimore Heritage YouTube channel: 

Five Minute Histories

2.2 - A Brief History of Oppression in Montgomery County

Community History

+ This Virtual African-American Heritage Walking Tour hosted by the City of Rockville takes you through historic locations connected to Black History in Downtown Rockville: African-American Heritage Walking Tour

Optional: Module 3 Supplemental Resources

The following list of supplemental resources for Module 3 are organized by the topics in the Module. Feel free to explore these resources for a deeper consideration of the topics.

3.1 - Historic Resistance in Baltimore (Timeline)

1826, Frederick Douglas sent to Baltimore at age 8

+ This blog details places where Frederick Douglass lived, worked, and interacted in Baltimore: Frederick Douglass Baltimore Sites

1863, The Emancipation Proclamation

+ This short article discusses the Emancipation Proclamation's context, vision, and limitations: The Emancipation Proclamation

1908, Thurgood Marshall is born in Baltimore

+ This is a riveting short biography of Thurgood Marshall, found on the Thurgood Marshall College website: About Justice Thurgood Marshall (1908-1993)

1915, Billie Holiday, raised in Baltimore from a young age, is born in Philadelphia

+ For further information about Billie Holiday's relationship to Baltimore, read the article, "What Billie Holiday Means to Baltimore." There is an image gallery of related photos at the top of the page: On Her Centennial, What Billie Holiday Means to Baltimore

+ This document on the Library of Congress website provides more information about Billie Holiday and the song "Strange Fruit," as well as a depiction of the lyrics: Strange Fruit

1920, Women in Maryland vote for the first time with passage of the 19th amendment

+ For additional context about Black women's struggle with voting rights, read this article: 'It's a Struggle They Will Wage Alone.' How Black Women Won the Right to Vote

1940, Woody Guthrie arrives in New York City

+ Listen to this subversive song by Woody Guthrie, while he was a member of the Almanac Singers: "Take It Easy" - Woody Guthrie/Almanac Singers (1942)

+ This video interview with Pete Seeger reveals more information about the origins and resistance work of the Almanac Singers: Pete Seeger Talks About The Almanac Singers, Etc. (2006)

1954, Brown v. Board of Education ends racial segregation in schools

+ This webpage on History.com discusses the laws leading up to Brown v. Board of Education as well as details of the case: Brown v. Board of Education

1964, The Civil Rights Act of 1964

+ Via this page, you may watch President John F. Kennedy's televised speech to the American people in June of 1963 announcing the submission of civil rights legislation to Congress. Scroll down this page to find the video under the heading titled, "Integrating the University of Alabama": John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum - Civil Rights Movement

+ This feature from NPR explores the text of the Civil Rights Act using annotations from  historians, legal experts, journalists, and activists, who all provide deeper context to the legislation: Behind the Civil Rights Act - How It Was Made and What It Means Today. As you begin to read the annotations, you may click back and forth between the commentary and the full text of the Act by using the tabs at the top of the browser.

1965, SCOPE (Summer Community Organization and Political Education) launched by the SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Conference)

+ The video clip in this link is of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speaking to an audience about the intended outcomes of the SCOPE campaign and how voting rights would change African American life in the south: Activism in the US: SCOPE Project

1967, Baltimore Teachers Union conducts its first strike against Baltimore City Public Schools

+ Details about the Baltimore Teachers Union history can be found here: Baltimore Teachers Union - History & Mission

1968, Baltimore American Indian Center (BAIC) is established

+ For further information about the Baltimore American Indian Center, visit: baltimoreamericanindiancenter.org

April 4, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is assassinated

+ This article provides additional details about the unrest following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: 100 Years: The Riots of 1968

1968, The Catonsville Nine set fire to Selective Service Office draft records

+ To learn more about the Catonsville Nine, peruse the "Home," "Action," "Trial," and "Profiles sections of this Enoch Pratt Free Library feature: Fire and Faith: The Catonsville Nine File

1968, The Baltimore Chapter of the Black Panther Party is established

+ For further information about the Black Panther Party both nationally and locally, see this research guide from The Maryland State Library Resource Center: How to Research the Black Panther Party

1970, The first Earth Day is celebrated in the U.S.

+ This Smithsonian Magazine article describes a California coastline oil spill, the shift in environmental activism leading up to the first Earth Day, and some of the nationwide efforts of that year: How an Oil Spill 50 Years Ago Inspired the First Earth Day

1971, Barbara Mikulski helps establish SCAR (Southeast Council Against the Road)

+ The first few minutes of this C-Span video is a good introduction to Barbara Mikulski's work for Baltimore and her support for public transit: Speech by Senator Barbara Mikulski

1975, The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is passed

+ This page on the U.S. Department of Education website summarizes what the IDEA act covers: About IDEA

1988, The Gay Rights Bill is passed by the Baltimore City Council

+ Click this link to read more about the passage of Baltimore's Gay Rights Bill: LGBTQI History: Sources

2000, Native American Lifelines is established in Baltimore

+ For further information about the work of Native American Lifelines, view this page on their website for a list of their services: NAL Services

2006, Tarana Burke begins the #MeToo movement

+ This video shows Tarana Burke discussing how the #MeToo movement started and the work surrounding it: 

Tarana Burke on How the #MeToo Movement Started and Where It's Headed

2011, Occupy Baltimore begins in McKeldin Square

+ This short news report discusses the city's shutting down of the Occupy Baltimore encampment after approximately two months: Police Remove Occupy Baltimore Protesters

+ This article from AK Press describes the beginnings of Occupy Baltimore: Occupy Baltimore: We Are the 99%! Activists Gather to Plan Occupy Baltimore Movement

2013, Black Lives Matter (BLM) is founded

+ This web page describes the impact and history of the Black Lives Matter movement (note that you may need to complete a CAPTCHA before proceeding to the website): Black Lives Matter - Herstory

2014, Eddie Conway is released from prison after serving 44 years on false charges

+ This Democracy Now clip details some of Eddie Conway's activism in prison and interviews Conway less than 24 hours after his release.

3.2 - Resistance in Baltimore Today

Economic Issues

+ You can read Baltimore Sun reporter Julie Scharper's 2010 article about the City Council fight for a living wage for workers of major city retailers for more insight into how Baltimore again had attempted to pass its own bill.

Living Wage Bill for Large Retailers Dies in City Council Committee.pdf

+ For further exploration, click on this map of state minimum wages (showing which states are at, above, and below the federal minimum according to the Fair Labor Standards Act) for more information about federal wages for contract workers and more: Federal and State Minimum Wage Rates

+ For additional information about the difficulties in implementing wage reform even when laws are passed, see this article from The Baltimore Sun two years after the city's first living wage bill was signed:

Promised a Living Wage Contract Workers - Mayor's Agreement to Increase Their Pay Will Be Difficult.pdf

Police Brutality

+ The full book, Baltimore Revisited, is an excellent resource on activism and resistance in Baltimore, and accessible via the HS/HSL Library by visiting this link (you will need to log in to access it): Baltimore Revisited: Stories of Inequality and Resistance in a U.S. City

Violence in the Community

+ This article considers activist Dante Barksdale's legacy with Safe Streets: Dante Barksdale, Respected Baltimore Safe Streets Leader, Shot and Killed Sunday

+ The full report from Johns Hopkins of the Safe Streets research findings may be found here: Evaluation of Baltimore's Safe Streets Program: Effects on Attitudes, Participants' Experiences, and Gun Violence


+ You can learn more about Red Shed Village and its services via this link: https://www.baltimoremagazine.com/section/community/red-shed-village-addresses-homelessness-charles-village/

Food Justice

+ This article discusses efforts by Reverend Heber Brown III of Baltimore's Pleasant Hope Baptist Church to bring food security to Baltimore and communities nationwide by launching the Black Church Food Security Network: 'I wanted to do more for people than just pray': Pastor blends faith, farms to end food insecurity in black churches


+ You may read the Founder of the Baltimore Trans Alliance — Bryanna A. Jenkins' — own words on her experience in this interview: Success Talk: Bryanna Jenkins | Founder of Baltimore Transgender Alliance

Immigrant Rights

+ You may read more here about CASA's 2022 Maryland legislature agenda: 2022 Maryland Legislative Session Agenda 

+ You may scroll through this photo album to see the development of the CASA Baltimore Regional Education & Employment Center: Baltimore Groundbreaking

+ If you'd like, watch this newscast from ABC News to get a feel for the travel ban protest at BWI:

Arts Activism

+ You may view Stephen Towns's portfolio of work on the Baker Artist Award website. PLEASE NOTE: When scrolling down through the portfolios, the eighth portfolio Towns shares, "Joy Cometh in the Morning," contains painted images of nooses. Please be aware to stop viewing the portfolios prior to that if you do not wish to view the paintings: Baker Artist Portfolios: Stephen Towns Portfolio

Cultural Resistance

+ This webpage on Native American activist Elizabeth Rule's website lists numerous articles about issues pertinent to Native American cultural resistance: Elizabeth Rule - Press

+ This 2019 CBS newscast showing the Latin American Heritage Festival discusses concerns regarding potential Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids and the impact on the festival: Low Turnout At Latin American Heritage Festival, Even With No ICE Activity Reported In Baltimore

Youth Organizing

+ This article provides some additional details about Healing City Baltimore, that Councilman Cohen discusses in the video: Youth-Led Advocacy Creates Healing Opportunities in Baltimore City

+ You may read the Baltimore Algebra Project's mission statement here: Baltimore Algebra Project: Mission & Vision

+ For further exploration, see this article from the Baltimore Sun about SOMOS's efforts to change how English language learners are scored when competing for high school acceptance: Baltimore Students Learning English Say They Still Don't Have a Fair Shot at the City's Top Schools

English Learners in Baltimore Want Fair Shot at Top City Schools.pdf

+ You may watch this video to learn more about Baltimore Beyond Plastic and their efforts to ban the use of styrofoam in the city: Mercedes Thompson & Claire Wayner

3.3 - Resistance in Montgomery County

Historic Resistance Efforts

+ This article discusses the Peter Mentz Farmstead, which was recently identified by the National Park Service as a historic underground railroad site in Montgomery County. The article alludes to the conflictual history in Montgomery County (and all of Maryland) between those who supported abolition and widespread attitudes that supported slavery and the human rights abuses and hate it represented: Historic Montgomery County farmstead recognized as an Underground Railroad site 

Current Efforts to Address Equity in Education

+  You can learn more here about the results of the Montgomery County Public Schools' boundary analysis, which highlight significant inequities based on race and socioeconomic status: MCPS Interactive Boundary Explorer

Optional: Module 4 Supplemental Resources

4.2 - Social Work Today: Core Values and Frameworks

Social Justice and Social Work

+ For further exploration of Dr. Kenneth Clark's work, as well as his work with his wife, Mamie Phipps Clark, please see these links:

Kenneth B. Clark

Mamie Phipps Clark, PhD, and Kenneth Clark, PhD

Critical Disability Theory

+ Here is an optional resource if you're interested in learning more about neurodiversity: Clearing Up Some Misconceptions about Neurodiversity

4.3 - Core Social Work Skills

Cultural Humility

+ You may read more about the revisions to the Code of Ethics, which also include a new statement on self-care as a requirement of the profession: 2021 Amendments: NASW Code of Ethics: Self-Care and Cultural Competence

+ Consistent with the changes in the Code of Ethics, in June 2021, NASW released a report focused on acknowledging and undoing racism in social work. Click here to read the report: Undoing Racism Through Social Work: NASW Report to the Profession on Racial Justice Priorities