Honestly, I thought I would have a chance to meet him, sit with him over coffee, or more likely over an article (mine), and hear his thoughts, critiques, and questionings. I naively thought that, in the midst of a raging pandemic and escalating brutality against black and brown bodies and blackness, I would be afforded the privilege to sit in the presence of this intellectual giant, one who was so central to my intellectual awakening and foundational to my life as a scholar. The Racial Contract gave clarity and theoretical foundation to the life I had been witnessing but did not dare find words to express. For more than a decade, after my first reading of The Racial Contract, it did not leave my side. It came with me to dance classes, rehearsals, and on tour; as I read other books or encountered mundane and key life moments, I referred back to it to see what more I should, or could, be witnessing. I travelled with it across the United States and across the Atlantic to the Caribbean and several European countries, finding solace and strength in the lens it offered as I worked to make sense of surreal racial encounters.
Rest In Peace/Power Professor Charles W. Mills. Thank you for all your good works!