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Podcast: Deion Hawkins on Police Brutality and the Black Community

Hawkins head shot
Assistant Professor Deion Hawkins. Courtesy photo

As America seethes with unrest following the police killing of yet another unarmed black man, the Campus on the Common podcast is replaying “Trauma and Communication: Police Brutality and the Black Community,” a conversation with Deion Hawkins, assistant professor of Communication Studies.

In this episode, originally aired June 6, 2019, Hawkins shares his research and insights on: the history of policing in the U.S.; three reasons why Black males are disproportionately targeted by the police; the impact of racism on health; the continuance of police brutality despite increased awareness of it outside the Black community; and what those outside the Black community can do to help.


Hawkins is a health communication scholar whose research utilizes intercultural theory to mitigate health disparities. He has studied a myriad of topics, including police violence as a health issue and HIV in the Black MSM community. He is an avid social justice advocate for marginalized communities. In addition to his work in academia, Hawkins has worked as a health communication consultant for various social marketing campaigns, combatting issues such as human trafficking, advanced care directives, youth homelessness, and PrEP awareness.

Hawkins has been involved in competitive speech and debate since he was 13 years old. In six years of coaching, he has coached several national finalists, including champions in duo interpretation and IPDA debate.

Hosted by Mark Brodie, affiliated faculty member in Communication Studies, Campus on the Common provides looks at the field of media and communication through the lens of academic experts and industry professionals from Emerson and beyond.


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