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Black History Month features lectures, films and a performance (Released: 1/26/98)

by Luis Mocete, Office of University Communications.

Storrs, Conn. -- The University of Connecticut will celebrate Black History Month in February with lectures, films and a performance.

Opening ceremonies will be held on Feb. 2 at 5 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom, with a Martin Luther King Jr. birthday celebration and a lecture by William Gray, President and CEO of the United Negro College Fund. Gray served in Congress as chairman of the Democratic Caucus and majority whip, the highest position ever held by an African American in Congress.

Highlights of the month include a lecture by activist Sister Souljah, author of No Disrespect, on Feb. 9 at 6 p.m. in the H. Fred Simons African American Cultural Center. Souljah, who has lectured in Southern Africa, Europe, and the former Soviet Union, will discuss ways African American women can develop definitions of self that are rooted in their history.

On Feb. 12, David Pesci, UConn '85, will discuss his novel Amistad, which has been on the New York Times and Boston Globe's best-seller list. The book is based on the story of Singbe-Pieh (also known as Cinque), who in 1839 staged a slave rebellion on board the ship Amistad. The talk will take place in the H. Fred Simons African American Cultural Center, beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Other events in the month include:

  • Feb. 5 - Lecture. William Julius Wilson, Malcolm Wiener professor of social policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, will discuss bridging the racial divide; Student Union Ballroom at 4 p.m.
  • Feb. 6 - Film. Keep Your Eyes On The Prize; Relive the pain, the protest, the sacrifice and triumph of the American civil rights movement. The film series, Eyes On The Prize, will be shown in the H. Fred Simons African American Cultural Center conference room every Friday through March 27, from noon to 1 p.m.
  • Feb. 11 - Faculty Staff Mixer. Discuss issues affecting the University with members of the UConn community, in the H. Fred Simons African American Cultural Center from noon to 1 p.m.
  • Feb. 17 - Panel. Discussion on how California’s Proposition 209 is affecting recruitment strategies of African American students; Student Union Ballroom at 6 p.m.
  • Feb. 19 - Panel. A follow-up to the program on Feb. 17. Panelists will discuss new strategies for recruiting African American students since Proposition 209; Student Union Ballroom at 6 p.m.
  • Feb. 20 - Film. Eves Bayou; A film seen through the eyes of a young African American woman who learns about her father’s sexually explicit behavior; Von der Mehden Recital Hall at 8 p.m.
  • Feb. 21 - Pageant. Mr. and Miss Black UConn Pageant; Student Union Ballroom at 6 p.m.
  • Feb. 25 - Lively Wednesday. African American entertainment and food; Student Union Lobby 12 to 2 p.m.
  • Feb. 26 - Lecture. Motivational speaker James Parker, UConn '89, a motivational speaker will talk about developing one’s self; H. Fred Simons African American Cultural Center at 6 p.m.
  • Feb. 27 - Cabaret. Experience the spirit, culture, and music of Zaire, Africa, with a performance by the Dominic Kanza and African Rhythm Machine; Student Union Ballroom at 8 p.m.