University of York’s English Department send public apology after lecturer repeatedly uses racial slur

The slur was used in a second year lecture this week


Helen Smith, the Head of the English department, sent an apology to all English undergraduates after a lecturer repeatedly used the phrase 'n*gro" without content warning in a lecture on Race and Film.

Shocked second years took the matter to the department, who responded immediately.

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The racial slur was part of a quote

In the email, Helen apologised for the usage of the term, expressing that "the word was used as part of a quotation" and she is "confident that it did not reflect the views of the lecturer."

Helen also acknowledged that "the fact of the word being read out caused considerable distress to a number of students."

The email states the following apology

"I am extremely sorry that this happened, and I have written to all staff in the department to make it clear that they should not pronounce racial slurs as part of their teaching, and that if those words appear in texts on power point slides they should be prefaced with an appropriate content warning."

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One of the slides from the lecture

Furthermore, she reaffirmed that "the department is fully committed to Equality and Diversity, and takes the use of any slurs or derogatory language extremely seriously."

The Tab contacted Helen Smith in regards to the lecturer, who we have been told would like to keep their anonymity.