Stories from the Struggle for Civil Rights

An Oral History, Performance and Digital Humanities Outreach Project of the

Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, UMBC

Promotional Video

Click here to see our promotional preview on Vimeo!



Digital Stories

Click below to view their digital stories.

Patricia Brown Leak's Story             Lu Coleman's Story                           PHOTOGRAPHS BY ROBERT HOUSTON

Oral History Performances in the Press

WJZ tv-13 (TV broadcast)

The Signal on WYPR (radio broadcast/podcast)

Baltimore Magazine ("cameo" print article)

The Beacon Newspaper (print article)

What's Hot on WPBradio.com (radio braodcast/podcast)

This project (formerly For All the World to Hear: Stories from the Struggle for Civil Rights) organized by the Center for Art, Design & Visual Culture, UMBC, is a dynamic humanities project in which approximately 10 older adults from the Baltimore area tell, write, perform, and digitally publish personal stories of their involvement in the struggle for civil rights.

The first part of the project brings senior citizens from inter-racial and inter-faith backgrounds together for a series of oral history interview meetings. With guidance from oral historian, dramaturg, and performance director, Harriet Lynn, their written accounts will result in a script that the participants will perform before diverse audiences in the Baltimore area.

Following each live performance there will be mediated, interactive audience discussions. Performances will be held at sites including museums, libraries, and college campuses. Additionally, CADVC’s long-standing K-14 educational outreach program will activate connections with schools in proximity to performances resulting in a rich, first person history lesson for Baltimore area school children.

2012 - 2013 Performance Schedule*

Thursday, November 15, (Preview) 12 pm

UMBC, The Commons  (UMBC Directions & Parking)

Wednesday, December 12, 10:30 am

Reginald F. Lewis Museum of African American History and Culture

Friday, February 8, 12 pm

Baltimore City Hall for the Baltimore National Heritage area's

It's More Than History! Brown Bag Lecture Series

Board of Estimates Room, 2nd floor

Sunday, February 10, 2 pm

Jewish Museum of Maryland

Tuesday, February 12, 6 pm

Maryland Historical Society

Friday, February 15, 10:30 am

UMBC, Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building, 1st floor

Saturday, February 23, 2 pm

Enoch Pratt Free Library, Main Branch

*Check back at this website for venue updates and weather cancellations. Directions and parking info is available at venues' websites linked above.

The second half of the program involves the same group of seniors with the Center's ongoing digital publishing initiative through a unique digital storytelling component. Each senior will work with a UMBC student to realize his or her story in digital video format, which will ultimately be published to the Internet at UMBC’s digital story site, (umbc.edu/stories). The digital stories will eventually be introduced and distributed via iTunes U to K-16 schools throughout Maryland and beyond. At this time you can view two stories from the pilot year of our digital storytelling program at these links:

Transformation, by Gloria Oden

What My Uniform Means to Me, by Marie Bemkey

Currently, we are seeking support for completing a documentary film, which chronicles the entire process of developing this community of practice among the seniors and students. The film documents the beginning with their first meeting in September 2012 through the spring of 2013 with the web launch and screening of their digital stories.

This project is a community outreach program of the Center for Art, Design & Visual Culture, UMBC. It is organized by Sandra Abbott, CADVC’s curator of collections and outreach in collaboration with Harriet Lynn, producer/artistic director of Heritage Theatre Artists’ Consortium. The program is supported in part by the Maryland Humanities Council. Program partners include the St. Francis Neighborhood Center, Stoop Storytelling Series, Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory & Botanic Gardens, Druid Hill Park and the Senior Citizen Division of Baltimore City Recreation and Parks. Media partners include The Beacon Newspaper and WYPR. Learn the latest about the project including updates on venues here at this site.

The Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture is a non-profit organization dedicated to organizing comprehensive exhibitions, the publication of catalogs, CDs, DVDs, and books on the arts, and educational and community outreach projects.


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