Baylor Schedules Black History Month Presentations

Feb. 10, 2005

by Alan Hunt

The public is invited to celebrate Black History Month with reenactments of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr., during a presentation by Dr. Ernest W. Tutt at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 17, at Baylor University's Sheila and Walter Umphrey Law Center.

The program, in Room 122 at the law center, is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served following the program. The event is sponsored by Baylor University and Baylor Law School in conjunction with the Diversity in Law organization.

Mollie McGraw, president of Diversity in Law, said Tutt performs dramatic presentations about those who fought for the rights of African-Americans, presenting the rich oral traditions of Black America through narrative and historical speech re-enactments. "His performance portrays African-Americans' century-long struggle for freedom, justice and equality."

Tutt is a speech and communication professor at Skagit Valley College, Mount Vernon, Wash. For more information about his presentation, contact Law Professor Patricia Wilson at (254) 710-6591.

Other Black History Month events at Baylor include an exhibit presented by Baylor Libraries, highlighting African-Americans who have appeared on U.S. postal stamps. The exhibit will be displayed throughout February in the Moody-Jones corridor.

The stamps honor legendary figures, from early political leaders to renowned jazz greats. Posters in the display feature Harriet Tubman, Madam C.J. Walker and George Washington Carver, who was the first African-American whose likeness was on a stamp. Photos of famous activists such as Malcolm X and musicians like Scott Joplin also are featured in the exhibit.

To commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, a display in the Jones library foyer features the civil rights leader's most famous speech, along with pictures and books on the civil rights movement. For more information about the exhibit, contact the Baylor Libraries at 710-2112.

Black History Month, an annual event since 1926, celebrates African-Americans who have made significant contributions and demonstrates how they impacted society.

Harvard University scholar Carter G. Woodson organized the first annual Negro History Week, which took place during the second week of February. Woodson chose this date to coincide with the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln -- two men who had greatly impacted the black population. In the 1970s, the event was expanded to include the entire month of February.

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