Your Life: A Celebration of Peace & Social Justice Yesterday and Today
The department of Student Life & Activities, working with the History Department, is proud to present this year’s Jacob Needle Lecture in History, featuring the Rev. Dr. Bernard Lafayette Jr., on Tuesday, February 23, in the Warner Student Life Center’s Navesink Rooms during College Hour, starting at 11:45 AM.
An original Freedom Rider, this is the powerful harrowing and ultimately inspirational story of six months in 1961 that changed America forever, seen through the eyes of a 20 year old student, Bernard Lafayette. From May until November 1961, more than 400 black and white Americans risked their lives, and many endured savage beatings and imprisonment – for simply traveling together on buses and trains as they journeyed through the Deep South. Deliberately violating Jim Crow Laws, the Freedom Riders met bitter racism and mob violence along the way, sorely testing their belief in nonviolent activism.
The Rev. Dr. Bernard Lafayette Jr. co-founded the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1960, and was a core leader of the civil rights movement in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1960 and in Selma, Alabama, in 1965. As part of the May 17 Nashville Student Movement Ride, Lafayette endured jail time in Birmingham; riots and fire bombings in Montgomery, Alabama; arrest in Jackson, Mississippi; and jail time at Parchman State Prison Farm during June 1961. He directed the Alabama Voter Registration Project in 1962. He was appointed by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to be National Program Administrator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and National Coordinator of the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign.
Dr. Lafayette earned his B.A. from the American Baptist Theological Seminary in Nashville, TN, and his Ed.M. and Ed.D from Harvard University. Dr. Lafayette is the author of In Peace and Freedom: My Journey in Selma.
His talk at Brookdale is free and open to all.