Wheelock Black History Month Event and Film Series
February 8 - February 27
Wheelock faculty will be hosting the following event and film series that explores the history and culture of black people. The event celebrates and explores the experiences of blacks in the military. The films are about the criminalization of black people and mass incarceration and key moments in the 20th century Civil Rights Movement. The stories of these key moments are told in episodes from the classic documentary – Eyes on The Prize. The last film has just been released and is currently in theatres. It is called “Hidden Figures” and it tells the story of three black women who work for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). These women worked as a mathematician and as engineers who were essential to NASA’s effort to explore space and put a man on the moon. All of the films show how individuals and groups stood up to unfair and oppressive circumstances and paved the way for a more just America.
Feb. 8, 4PM.- 6PM. Campus Center, Wolf Room, Eyes on The Prize Vol. I: The Awakening ( 1954 – 1956) (DVD)
- This episode shows how the murder of a young boy, Emmett Till, in Mississippi is an example of oppression in the South. It is in this context that we are introduced to a 27 year old black preacher, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the 1956 bus boycott in Montgomery that started the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. The boycott, also, reveals King’s gifts as a courageous and inspiring speaker who brings national attention to the social injustices defining black life in the South.
Feb.13, 4 PM. – 6PM. Campus Center Wolf Room, Eyes on The Prize, Vol. III: Mississippi, Is This America (1962-64) (DVD)
- This episode explores the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and its work in Mississippi. This work results in the development of a black political party in Mississippi. This party challenges the legitimacy of the white Mississippi political party at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. The title of this episode is from Fannie Lou Hammer’s famous speech at this convention. She speaks at the convention as a representative on the black Mississippi party. Also, Stokley Carmicahel, Chairman of SNCC, challenges Dr. King’s principles of integration and non-violence with his announcement that blacks should want and aim for “Black Power.” This causes a national debate and conversation among blacks and whites about the future direction of the civil rights movement and what it means to be black.
Feb.16, 6PM. – 8 PM., Honoring Black Soldiers and Veterans
- This event recognizes the contributions of black soldiers and veterans to the United States Armed Services. For more information contact Professor Shirley Malone –Fenner.
Feb. 21, 4PM.- 6 PM., Campus Center, Wolf Room, Thirteenth (a documentary on Netflicks)
- In this documentary, scholars, activists and politicians are interviewed about the criminalization of blacks and the growth of the mass incarceration in a for-profit prison industry. The Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery, provides the context for this documentary.
Feb. 27, 4PM.- 6 PM., Campus Center, Wolf Room, Hidden Figures Discussion (Film currently in movie theatres)
- Participants in this event should have seen the movie in one of the theatres. We will use our time to discuss responses to this new film about three black women who worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).