In Black and White
Events and speakers consider racial injustice
From a “Mad Law Professor” to a film about
a 50-year-old murder that ignited the American civil rights movement to a leading South African activist, the spring events series sponsored by the Office of Institutional Diversity is quite strong.
Patricia J. Williams, professor of law at Columbia University, speaks on civil rights and social wrongs for the annual birthday tribute to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Williams writes the “Diary of a Mad Law Professor” column every other week in The Nation.
The recipient of a MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” for her work on civil rights and social inequality, she is the author of The Alchemy of Race and Rights, named one of the 25 best books of 1991.
• Williams speaks at 7:30 p.m. January 25.
For Black History Month, the program is a documentary, The Untold Story of Emmett Till, and a discussion with its director, Keith Beauchamp, who spent nine years investigating the brutal death of Emmett Till and its aftermath.
In 1955, Emmett Till was a 14-year-old African-American kid from Chicago who whistled at a white woman in Mississippi, where he was visiting friends. Three days later, two white men pulled him from his bed in the dead of night, beat him up, and shot him. Though they bragged of the killing, they were acquitted by an all-white, all-male jury and then sold their story to a journalist.
When Till’s body was pulled from the Tallahatchie River, a group of nascent civil rights activists mobilized in protest. Three months later, they launched the first great action of the civil rights movement: the bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama.
• The film will be shown at 4:00 p.m. The lecture-discussion with Beauchamp is at 7:30 p.m.
Women’s History Month brings Nontombi Naomi-Cecilia Tutu, daughter of South Africa’s Episcopal prelate, Desmond Tutu, one of the leading voices of the anti-apartheid movement.
Her day job is associate director of the Office of International Relations at Tennessee State University. But she is a busy speaker around the world on issues of race and gender equality.
Among her many activities, she was one of the first Brandeis International Fellows in Coexistence and South Africa’s representative to the Africa Network of the International Conference on Safe Communities.
• Naomi Tutu speaks at 7:30 p.m. March 15.
All these events are in the HUB’s Prosser Auditorium. And all are free.
Also in March is Jane Lazarre, who has written of her biracial sons in a memoir, Beyond the Whiteness of Whiteness. She directs the writing program at Eugene Lang College, New School University.
• Jane Lazarre speaks March 29.
Information: Ext. 7847.
Moravian College and Moravian Theological Seminary are hosts of the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast, sponsored by the Bethlehem branch of the NAACP, the Bethlehem Area Council of Churches, and the YWCA. The breakfast is at 8:00-10:00 a.m. Monday, January 17, in the HUB.
This year’s program is a community dialogue on race relations. Tickets are $6, but a limited number at half-price have been reserved for Moravian students. To attend, call Gloria Guth at Ext. 7847 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.