Harvesting the Dream: All Hands on the Freedom Plow
Denison University's 2011 Celebration of the Life and Legacy of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Each year Denison University honors the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., with events that revolve around a central theme. This year’s theme, “Harvesting the Dream: All Hands on the Freedom Plow,” will challenge the Denison community to move beyond the rhetoric and traditional concepts of community and expand our definitions to include Granville and neighboring areas. As issues of social justice continue to resonate with our communal desire for change, we must ask ourselves who is willing, ready and able to promote, encourage and implement change throughout our campus landscape and global community. Be sure to join students, faculty and staff for a week of insightful and thought-provoking activities.
Please be sure to check this website for the most up-to-date information. Time, location, etc., may change without further notice as the events approach.
This years celebration features Diane Nash as this year's convocation speaker (view video below):
Event: 2011 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Challenge
Participants: Denison faculty, staff, and students
Dates: Saturday, January 22, 2011 - Monday, January 24, 2011 (noon to noon)
REGISTRATION WILL END AT 2PM ON WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 19TH. DON'T MISS OUT!
If you drew on your shared knowledge, creativity, and energy, how much could you, as Denisonians, accomplish within a 48-hour period of time to address local needs? Inspired by Dr. King's legacy of service, all members of the campus community—students, faculty, staff, and friends of the college--are invited to rise to the challenge of finding out.
On Saturday, January 22nd, pre-registered volunteers will be organized into teams, and each team will be presented with a task to complete. Pre-reflection, as well as the delegation challenge assignments, will take place at noon on the 22nd in Slayter Auditorium. Teams will have from noon on Saturday until noon on Monday, January 24th, to complete the task. Each team's task will remain a secret until it is presented to the team on Saturday. You might be asked to prepare as many lunches as possible for a local homeless shelter, develop the presentation of a story about King for a 3rd grade class on Monday morning, plan and film a video about financial literacy for women at the domestic violence shelter, or collect costumes for a new theater program for autistic children. Whatever the task, it will draw on the unique talents and skills of all group members, while requiring that you, in the words of Dr. King, "use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right."
To register, please visit "MLK Service Challenge" under "My Courses" in Blackboard.
There will be tabling after break in Slayter Union, and will start right after students arrive back on campus and end right before the event. Faculty/staff may sign up at the tables in Slayter or via Blackboard. Additionally, they are welcome to contact Lyn Robertson or Kelly Ficker to be placed appropriately. Further questions or concerns should be directed to Lyn or Kelly.
Sponsors: 2011 MLK Planning Committee and The John W. Alford Center for Service-Learning
Event: Community Luncheon & Dialogue
Date: Monday, January 24, 2010
Location: Curtis and Huffman Dining Halls
Time: 11:30 a.m.
In 1957, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., said that "Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'" During his 1964 Nobel Prize acceptance speech, he proclaimed "I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, quality and freedom for their spirit. I believe that what self-centered men have torn down, other-centered men can build up." With the 2011 Rev. Dr. MLK, Jr., Service Challenge completed, we invite you to join the rest of campus in a community luncheon and dialogue as we begin a week of intentional reflection on our service to others and what we can do to help push the freedom plow.
Sponsor: 2011 MLK Planning Committee
Guest: Diane Nash
Additional panelists: Bakari Kitwana and Amy Lazarus
Date: Monday, January 24, 2011
Location: Swasey Chapel
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Nothing is more important than cultivating student change-making during a modern era of global expansion and social innovation. Our keynote speaker, the award-winning veteran Civil Rights activist and co-founder of the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) Diane Nash will be joined by two distinguished panelists, Hip-Hop Activism in the Obama Era author Bakari Kitwana, and Sustained Dialogue Campus Network (SDCN) Executive Director Amy Lazarus, to discuss our theme, “Harvesting the Dream: All Hands on the Freedom Plow” and to explore the meaning of college student change-making and social justice innovation in the 21st Century.
As a Fisk University student, in 1960, Diane Nash became the chairperson of the non-violent student sit-in movement in Nashville, the first southern city to desegregate its lunch counters. Presented by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., with SCLC’s highest award in 1965 for strategizing the Selma voting rights campaign, and appointed by President John F. Kennedy to the national committee that promoted the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, Ms. Nash was also an activist in the peace movement that worked to end the Vietnam War. Today, she is an instructor in the philosophy and strategy of non-violence as developed by Mahatma Gandhi, and is a contributing essayist in the recent book, Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC (U Illinois Press, 2010).
An opportunity to interact with the Nash-Kitwana-Lazarus panel will be made available following the convocation at the library reception.
Bakari Kitwana [jpg] is a journalist, activist and political analyst whose commentary on politics and youth culture have been seen on the CNN, FOX News (the O’Reilly Factor), C-Span, PBS (The Tavis Smiley Show) and heard on NPR. He is the CEO of Rap Sessions. His 2002 book The Hip-Hop Generation has been adopted as a course book in classrooms at over 100 colleges and universities. Kitwana’s been Executive Editor of the Source and co-founder the first ever National Hip-Hop Political Convention. He has been Artist-in-Residence at the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture at the University of Chicago and is a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for the Study of Women and Gender in the Arts and Media. Hip-Hop Activism in the Obama Era (Third World Press, 2010) is his most recent book.
Amy Lazarus [jpg] is the first Executive Director of Sustained Dialogue Campus Network (SDCN), an organization whose mission is to develop everyday leaders who engage differences as strengths to improve campuses, workplaces and communities. SDCN is comprised of students from colleges and universities around the country who are using dialogue to alleviate their campus' social tensions and make their communities more cohesive. Prior to joining the SDCN team, Amy worked at ICF International, consulting for federal agencies on diversity, inclusion and leadership development. Amy brings a passion for - and over 10 years of experience working with - individuals and organizations to create inclusive environments. In addition, Amy's research has focused on both best practices for training change agents in inclusion and the relationship between social entrepreneurship and economic development. Amy lives in Washington, DC, is a board member of Operation Understanding DC, and has sung backup to Aretha Franklin with the Let Freedom Choir.
Sponsor: 2011 MLK Planning Committee
Event: Library Reception
Guests: Denison faculty, staff and students
Date: Monday, January 24, 2011
Location: William Howard Doane Library & Seeley G. Mudd Learning Center
Time: 3:30 p.m.
"Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it." - Martin Luther King, Jr. (from Strength to Love, 1963)
Please join the Denison community for an informal reception in the Library at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 24th. It's a time to pause and reconnect with our community. Since 2006, the Library has promoted the MLK Day of Learning with a reception in its welcoming spaces, and through themed exhibits that reflect the ideals of MLK.
In his Letter from Birmingham City Jail, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote: "Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed." Following the convocation, we invite you to explore various stations throughout the library, including opportunities to continue discussions with our speakers, Diane Nash, Bakari Kitwana, and Amy Lazarus. In addition, a limited number of copies of Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC (U Illinois Press, 2010) will be available for purchase.
Everyone is invited to join in constructing our campus community.
"Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy." - Martin Luther King, Jr. (1963 speech at Lincoln Memorial)
Sponsors: 2011 MLK Planning Committee & William Howard Doane Library
Event: New Muslim Cool Viewing & Discussion
Emcee/Moderator: Bakari Kitwana [jpg] (please refer to bio above)
Panelists: Hana Siddiqi (co-producer), Nura Maznavi (lawyer at Muslim Advocates), and Hamza Perez (film subject)
Date: Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Location: Slayter Auditorium
Time: 7:00 p.m.
It is perhaps most strongly in Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s, infamous "I Have a Dream" speech that we find ourselves questioning where we are today in relationship to the seeds he sowed in 1963: "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today!" Today, the dreams of America's citizenry are expressed in a multitude of identity differences.
Join us for a special MLK,Jr., Program that will screen the award-winning documentary film The New Muslim Cool. The PBS-featured film follows Puerto Rican rapper Hamza Perez as he steers away from his former life as a drug dealer and embraces Islam. Yet, as he rebuilds his life with a message of faith through hip-hop music, the FBI raids his mosque—challenging him to embark on an even deeper exploration of his religion, profiling, tolerance and American identity. Following the film, author-activist Bakari Kitwana, along with co-producer Hana Siddiqi, Muslim Advocates Attorney Nura Maznavi, and Jason Hamza Perez, the subject of the film, will lead an interactive town hall discussion that examines the complex intersection of religion, government, race, ethnicity, hip-hop, gender and the future of our democracy.
For more information, please visit: http://www.newmuslimcool.com/
Hana Siddiqi [jpg] was born in London, England, and raised with a combination of traditional Islamic and modern Western ideals. As an undergraduate she designed her own interdisciplinary major and wrote her thesis paper entitled Muslim Culture, Identity Politics, and Hip Hop in America. In 2001-2, she worked as a researcher for Human Rights Watch and a freelance writer, covering art and culture as well as the WTC attack of 9/11. She received a Masters degree in Near Eastern Studies from New York University in 2003 after conducting a year long ethnographic study of the local Halvati-Jerrahi Sufis. Hana participated in the 2006 PBS Producers’ Academy at WGBH in Boston, and BAVC’s 2007 Producers Institute in 2007. She is currently working on a film about a Chinese-American Muslim convert who blogs about her struggle with faith after losing her husband. When she is not filming her documentary or music videos for local indie artists, Hana oversees instruction for children with learning challenges. She and her husband, a music producer and graphic designer live in California with their 3 year old daughter--a Beatles fan.
Nura Maznavi [jpg] is a full-time staff attorney with Muslim Advocates leading its Program to End Religious & Racial Profiling. Prior to joining Muslim Advocates, she was an associate with the law firm Rosen, Bien & Galvan, focusing on civil rights litigation, primarily prisoner rights class actions on behalf of California state inmates. She was recently appointed to an advisory committee to the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and also serves on the board of the Bay Area Association of Muslim Lawyers and is a representative to the Minority Bar Coalition of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Jason Hamza Perez [jpg] is an artist, community activist, and educator. He works for a national non-profit organization as a youth and jail counselor focusing on drug dealing prevention and gang violence intervention, and also works as the vice principal of a private Islamic elementary school. With his brother Juan Suliman Pérez, he performs and speaks across the country as part of the hip-hop group M-Team and the interfaith poetry project Crossing Limits.
Sponsors: 2011 MLK Planning Committee and The Office of Multi-Cultural Student Affairs
Event: New Muslim Cool Lunch Reception
Date: Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Location: Welsh Hills Room
Time: 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
The Office of Multi-Cultural Student Affairs welcomes you to join us in a reception featuring our New Muslim Cool guests. After what promises to be an enriching program Tuesday night, Wednesday's reception offers the community an opportunity to ask the questions you had been thinking all night post-film viewing and interact with Bakari Kitwana and Jason Hamza Perez prior to their departure from campus.
Reservation required; please RSVP to Mark Anthony Arceño (firstname.lastname@example.org) by January 19, 2011.
Sponsor: The Office of Multi-Cultural Student Affairs
Event: Student-Sponsored Poetry Slam
Date: Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Location: The Bandersnatch
Time: 9:00 p.m.
Denison faculty, staff and students will be asked to address this year’s theme, “Harvesting the Theme: All Hands on the Freedom Plow” in the spoken word tradition. Denison’s spoken word organization, Multi-Cultural Epistemology, will conduct a workshop for those who are interested. Select poems will be performed at the showcase. All works will be listed in the event’s program.
Spoken word is a style of performance poetry that began in New York City and became popular among blacks in the early nineties. It evolved from the oral tradition of free-style hip hop artists and poets who would perform at local open mics. Unlike previous styles of poetry, spoken word is usually written with the intention of being performed. It emphasizes the tone of the human voice, which adds another layer of meaning for interpretation. While spoken word poems may vary in style, most have a narrative; include some form of social commentary and range from being two to three minutes long. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spoken_word.
Sponsors: La Fuerza Latina, Black Student Union, Students of Caribbean Ancestry, African Student Association, Asian American Student Union, and Multi-Cultural Epistemology
Event: Multi-Religious Program
Date: Thursday, January 27, 2011
Location: Swasey Chapel
Time: 7:30 p.m.
The MLK Multi-Religious Program is not a “worship service.” Rather it is an attempt to bring together a variety of religious traditions in celebration of Dr. King’s bold non-violent stance for love, justice, and peace in the face of manifold human pain, suffering and oppression. This Program honors Dr. King’s world-wide impact on many societies and cultures, and celebrates the values in different faith traditions that are consistent with Dr. King’s life and legacy. It will feature creative Denison student voices in prose, poetry and song, complimented by artistic renditions from guest religious groups in Central Ohio. The Late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a vocal advocate for human and civil rights. He was a religious leader and a world-renowned political activist who embraced non-violence as a way of life. We hope that you will come join those of many faiths and political persuasions to pay tribute in movement, words and song to Dr. King and the impact he had on the march toward freedom among people around the world.
Sponsor: 2011 MLK Planning Committee
2011 Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Planning Committee
Co-Chairs: Erik Farley and Dr. John Jackson;
Student Members: Akeila Benjamin, Steve Flores, Amy Huang, Steven Profitt, Tenniecia Williams, and Jessica Wilson;
Faculty and Staff Members: Mark Anthony Arceño, John Beckman, Anne Crowley, Kelly Ficker, Dr. Verónica González López, Susie Kalinoski, Dr. Toni King, Dr. Tina Pierce, Sarah Ray, Dr. Lyn Robertson, Dr. Ronald Santoni, Virgina Sharkey and Dr. David Woodyard;
Special Assistance Provided by: Jacqueline Achard, Matthew Dunn, Kurt Hickman, Amy Huang, Matt Hughes, Brandon Hummons, Joseph Leija, Laurie MacKenzie-Crane, and Beth White.
Additional Thanks to: Sara Giustini (Freedom Riders Project Coordinator) and Tom Stanford (Photo Editor, The Tennessean)