The AGEISM inside us.

The RACISM inside us.

The CLASSISM inside us.

If you’re human, you’re biased. Now what?

The Bias Inside Us—an exhibition and community engagement project from the Smithsonian—is an exploration of the social science, psychology, and consequences of implicit bias.

This free exhibit – on display at the Columbus Public Library from July 2 through July 31 during normal business hours – understands that bias is an innate human trait; we all have it. Being aware of our bias can help us recognize their influence and impact on our behaviors and worldview.

The Bias Inside Us offers an opportunity to learn how to challenge bias in the world through awareness of one’s own bias.


The Columbus Public Library is one of 40 organizations across the country to be chosen to host this exhibit on it’s five year tour. The project, developed with a national advisory council and Smithsonian experts, is a community engagement effort that considers the connections between implicit bias and group dynamics, how they can lead to explicit acts of bias and hatred by individuals and whole societies, and what we as individuals can do about it.


Visitors who are unable to visit the Columbus Public Library in July or who would like a way to re-visit the major themes of the exhibition can visit the online version of The Bias Inside Us at This virtual version was created specifically by the Smithsonian as a companion piece to the in-person experience.


A number of community programs will take place that further explore our own bias, both in feelings we experience and in our various interactions throughout our lives.

ORAL HISTORY: COLUMBUS IN THE TIME OF SEGREGATION – The Columbus Public Library Genealogy and Local History Department is scheduling oral history sessions that will be professionally recorded and uploaded to our StoryCorps community page. These will take place throughout the month of July. Please call the department at 706.243.2681 for details.

TREASURE HUNT AND DIY JOURNALS – In this program especially for teens, we will use the exhibit to springboard journaling ideas that can lead to future writing or creative projects.

COMMUNITY DISCUSSION – -“THE BIAS INSIDE US” – The Adult Services Team at the Columbus Public Library will lead this community discussion of the exhibition themes and how bias is perceived in our community.

COMMUNITY READ – TONI MORRISON’S “THE BLUEST EYE” – The late Nobel prize winner Morrison delves into internalized bias and the concept of beauty. Copies of the book may be available, please contact the Adult Services department at 706.243.2681.

PRIVATE TOURS – Would your group like a private tour and moderated discussion of the exhibit? Please contact Henry McCoy at 706.243.2689 for details.


The Bias Inside Us is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.

Major support is provided by The Otto Bremer Trust.

Additional support provided by Acton Family Giving, Anonymous donors, The Beverly Foundation, Steve and Sheri Lear, Target, the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation Fund of the Minneapolis Foundation, Thomson Reuters, Alabama Power Foundation, Allianz of America, Valerie E. and William A. Anders, Atlanta Gas Light Foundation, Julie and David Burton, the Dreier Family, Lennart Ehn and Ginger Lew, Expedia, Trevor and Melissa Fetter, the Roger S. Firestone Foundation, Brenda J. Gaines, Myra Hart and Kent Hewitt, Charlie and Nancy Hogan, Judy and Bob Huret, Dr. Christine C. Jenkins and Mr. Pierre A. France, KNOCK, inc., Sarah Lawer and Frank Guanco, Leaders Forum, Kathleen Mason, Elyse Rabinowitz and Jim Porter, Dr. Philip S. and Alice Hoolihan Randall, Gloria del C. Rodriguez, the Family of Leona Roen, and Naoma Tate.

Based on an original concept developed by Tolerance in Motion: Steve Lear, Laura Zelle, and Elyse Rabinowitz, founders; Ellen Glatstein, Laura Lipshutz, Alice Randall, Joanne Jones-Rizzi, and Susan Shapiro, directors; Don Shelby, founding advisor; and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas, Steve Hunegs, executive director.

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