Honoring the Foremothers of the Civil Rights Movement — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. played a pivotal role in America’s civil rights movement beginning in 1955, when he led the Montgomery bus boycott, and continuing until his death in 1968. However, King was not a lone voice in the wilderness. He was part of a larger movement that had its origins in the nineteenth century. Today, as we honor King’s many contributions to the civil rights movement, I think that we should also honor the people who helped give birth to this movement, many of whom were African American women.
In her book titled Freedom Narratives of African American Women: A Study of 19th Century Writings, Janaka Lewis examines the writings of several African American women who wrote about the meaning and importance of freedom. The writers that Janaka covers in her book include Harriet Jacobs, Ellen Craft, Charlotte Forten, Elizabeth Keckley, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Anna Julia Cooper, and Lucy Craft Laney. As Janaka points out in her book, these women writers actively participated the national discourse about the changing definitions of freedom and citizenship. In the process, these women helped set the stage for the rise of the civil rights movement of the mid-twentieth century.
Janaka will talk about Freedom Narratives of African American Women later this month as part of the Personally Speaking Series. Her presentation will take place on Tuesday, January 29, 2019, at UNC Charlotte Center City. The presentation will begin at 6:30 p.m. A book signing and reception will follow her presentation. For more information and to RSVP, please click on the following link: https://exchange.uncc.edu/how-early-womens-writings-led-to-civil-rights-discourse/
Kudos — As you know, I like to use my Monday Missives to share news about recent accomplishments by members of the English Department. Here is the latest news:
Bryn Chancellor recently published an essay titled “String, Too Short” in Brevity: A Concise Journal of Nonfiction.
Juan Meneses recently introduced the Irish Ambassador to the United States, Daniel Mulhall, who gave a talk titled “A Virtuous Circle: Ireland, the E.U. and the U.S.” as part of the UNC Charlotte International Speakers Series.
Jen Munroe‘s co-edited volume titled Ecological Approaches to Early Modern Texts: A Field Guide to Reading and Teaching was reviewed in the most recent volume of Sixteenth Century Journal.
Lara Vetter‘s A Curious Peril: H.D.’s Late Modernist Prose was reviewed in the most recent volume of the Modern Language Review.
Upcoming Events and Meetings — Here is a list of upcoming events and deadlines:
February 1 — The 2018 Faculty Recognition Event will take place on February 1, 2019, from 3:30 to 5:00 pm in the Harris Alumni Center.
February 7 — Grace Ocasio will participate in a poetry reading at the Waccamaw Library on Pawleys Island, SC, from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
Quirky Quiz Question — One of the books that Janaka examines in Freedom Narratives of African American Women is a classic autobiography titled Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. This book was originally published under the pseudonym of Linda Brent. What is the real name of the author of this autobiography?
The CLGO’s “Celebration of Paddington Bear” brings to mind Paddington Bear’s origin story. According to this story, in what country was Paddington Bear living before he moved to London?