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October 13, 2012

FOR ALL THE WORLD TO SEE UMBC Humanities Forum Events


2012-13 UMBC For All the World to See Humanities Forum Events

The 2012-13 Humanities Forum series sponsored by The James T. and Virginia M. Dresher Center for the Humanities at UMBC will feature several events in conjunction with For All the World to See: Visual Culture and the Struggle for Civil Rights, on view at the Center for art, Design and Visual Culture, UMBC from 15 Nov. 2012 to 10 March 2013

28 Nov. 2012 4 p.m. Albin O. Kuhn Library Gallery
Collecting, Preserving, and Interpreting African American History and Culture

Panelists: Kinshasha Holman Conwill, National Museum of African American History and Culture, Michelle Joan Wilkinson, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland, Moira Hinderer, Afro American Newspaper Archive, Moderator: Denise Meringolo, UMBC

5 Dec. 2012 4 p.m. Proscenium Theater
The Civil Rights Movement from the Ground Up

Learn about the unsung young men and women who were at the forefront of the civil rights movement, in particular those in SNCC, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, which grew out of the 1960 sit ins by African-American college students. Julian Bond, one of the founders of SNCC and later chairman of the NAACP, Andrew Lewis, the author of The Shadows of Youth: The Story of the Civil Rights Generation, and UMBC President Freeman Hrabowski, who participated in the Birmingham Children’s March of 1963, will discuss the crucial--often under-appreciated--role youth and college students played in the movement. Moderated by Taylor Branch.

13 February 2013 4 p.m. Library
Panel Discussion: Race and the Civil Rights Movement in Music and the Media

Derek Musgrove, UMBC’s History Department, Michelle Scott, UMBC’s History Department, David Zurawik (Baltimore Sun and WYPR)

27 February 2013 7 p.m. Location TBA

Thulani Davis: Blackface: From the Age of Civil Rights to the Age of Obama

December 23, 2011

"The Ed Sullivan Show," Motown, and the Story of Civil Rights


By Maurice Berger, For All the World to See project director and curator

In a series of short essays published over the next year, I will examine recent efforts by scholars, artists, writers, and producers to rethink the visual culture of the civil rights movement. First up: my take on the set of exceptionally entertaining DVDs of Motown acts on The Ed Sullivan Show, produced by SOFA Entertainment. In the 1960s, the Sullivan show regularly booked African American artists from a then small record company from Detroit founded by Berry Gordy Jr. in 1960--Motown--introducing the nation to most of the company’s acts and helping to turn Motown into a national institution. One compilation from the set—Motown Gold from The Ed Sullivan Show—presents scores of thrilling performances, from such notable singers and groups as The Supremes, Four Tops, Gladys Night and the Pips, The Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Stevie Wonder, and the Temptations. Two more discs—The Best of the Temptations and The Best of the Supremes—pay homage to popular Motown acts who appeared regularly on the program. Collectively, the DVD collection offers a sustained picture of a group of entertainers who profoundly influenced American popular culture of the 1960s.

In the context of For All the World to See and its soon to open NEH on the Road iteration—both exhibitions include a section of 21-historic clips of African American performers on the Sullivan program—the Motown DVDs help us to understand, while simultaneously entertaining us, the vital role played by African American artists, as well as Ed Sullivan himself, in advancing the cause of civil rights. If prime-time dramas and situation comedies of the civil rights era rarely featured African-American actors or subject matter, The Ed Sullivan Show, as well as several other groundbreaking variety programs of the period, actively showcased black acts. Sullivan’s weekly variety hour, broadcast live on Sunday evening, was a civil rights trailblazer, granting unprecedented visibility to African-American entertainers who were often invisible in mainstream popular culture.

The most successful variety-hour on American television, the Sullivan show introduced a generation of Americans to a broad array of artists. Despite ongoing battles with conservative sponsors, Sullivan, the show’s producer and host, created an early and reliable forum for African-American singers, actors, and comedians. By showing black and white performers interacting as equals, and by bringing these entertainers into the homes of millions of Americans on a weekly basis, the program, as well as Sullivan himself, set an example of racial acceptance and integration, not just for the entertainment industry but for the nation at large.

In the end, The Ed Sullivan Show advanced the cause of civil rights by enfranchising African American performers, from its inception in 1948 to its last show in 1971. For black viewers, such performances were a source of pride and mainstream validation. For all viewers, these shows demonstrated the promise and desirability of integration by presenting black and white professionals interacting as equals. As powerfully as any contemporary exploration of black entertainers in the civil rights era, SOFA Entertainment’s Motown collection foregrounds this relatively under-represented aspect of civil rights history—reminding us of the power of gifted African American artists, a determined producer-host, and television itself, a relatively young medium at the time, to change the world.

Next up: scholar Christine Acham's groundbreaking study, Revolution Televised: Prime Time and the Struggle for Black Power (University of Minnesota Press, 2005)

August 29, 2011

Guided Tours of FATWTS: Tuesday, 30 August 2011


Event at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History: Guided tours of For All the World to See on Tuesday, 30 August 2011. From Smithsonian Magazine: "Members of the Civil Rights movement made heavy use of visual imagery in spreading awareness of their cause, from television to movies, magazines, newspapers, and posters. Experience For All the World to See with a firsthand docent-guided tour to get a fuller understanding of this critical period through this fascinating lens. Free. 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. African American History and Culture Museum.

> More Info on FATWTS Guided Tours

June 22, 2011

FATWTS On DC Metro and Buses!



[Photo by Jeff Tackett]

For All the World to See, as advertised on DC Metro trains and buses!

February 20, 2011

Performance: UnTill Emmett Till by Ernest Dawkins


In conjunction with the exhibition For All the World to See, The DuSable Museum of African American History in Chicago presents: UnTill Emmett Till by Ernest Dawkins. Sunday, March 27, 2011. 4:00 to 7:00 PM.

> For Information and Tickets Click Here

January 21, 2011

Important Educator Event At The DuSable Museum


In conjunction with the exhibition, For All the World to See: Visual Culture and the Struggle for Civil Rights, educators will learn the power of visual imagery representing historic events that inspired people to action. Using the tragic event of the kidnapping and murder of young Emmett Till on August 28, 1955, the exhibition, For All the World to See examines how visual images shaped, influenced, and transformed the fight for civil rights in the United States.

Participants will learn how to use art and visual images in a hands-on learning environment to build student writing and language art skills. Participants will also receive take home teaching materials and tour the exhibition.

Ideal for 5th – 12th grade educators
Please R.S.V.P. by Friday, February 11th to Jomo Cheatham at 773-947-0600 ext. 255

Illinois State Standards: Creating and Performing: 25: 25.A.2d, B.25.B.2, 26: A. 26.A.2e 26.A.2f B. 26.B.2d 26.B.4d

> To register and for more on the workshop, click here

January 5, 2011

FATWTS Opens in Chicago on 17 January 2011

Hello Chicago! For All the World to See opens on 17 January 2011 at the DuSable Museum of African American History and will run through 15 May 2011. This is your chance to see our critically acclaimed exhibition in the Chicago area.


Chicago: DuSable Museum of African American History
17 January to 15 May 2011

For more on FATWTS at the DuSable Museum, Click Here!

June 8, 2010



In conjunction with For All the World To See, the International Center of Photography and the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, UMBC are co-hosting this MUST see event.

Blackface Imagery and Its Answers: Stereotyping from the Early Civil Rights Era to the Obama Era

June 28, Monday, 7:00 pm
$5 non-members, free (members & students)

This event will take place at the International Center of Photography, 1130 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street.

Writer Thulani Davis will present a lecture on the cycles of call-and-response to generations of repeated, reworked and “reloaded” visual stereotypes of African Americans from their early days in print, regeneration in movies and new life on the internet. She will discuss how to “read” the images of objects designed to “serve” the viewer, such as common kitchen items depicting black faces, and show black responses to such imagery and how they in turn are recycled into new blackface. A global phenomenon since the turn of the 20th century, visual stereotypes have been used to promote colonization, immigration, products of all kinds, and the politics of inequality.

Thulani Davis is a journalist, playwright, and author of several books. Her most recent book, My Confederate Kinfolk, explores her black and white ancestors' lives around the time of the Civil War. Her other works include two novels, 1959 and Maker of Saints, several plays, and the scripts for the films Paid in Full and Maker of Saints. She has also written several award-winning PBS documentaries, and libretti for several operas. Davis has taught at Barnard College, Princeton University, and NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. She is a past recipient of a Lila Wallace-Readers Digest Writers Award, a PEW Foundation National Theatre Artist Residency, and a Charles H. Revson Fellowship on the Future of New York City. She is a 1993 Grammy winner. Davis was educated at Barnard College, Columbia University, and New York University. She is currently doing research as a recipient of a fellowship from the Leon Levy Center for Biography at the City University of New York.

Register for this event online or call 212.857.0001.

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