history Archive

Practical Equality: Forging Justice in a Divided Nation- Professor Robert L. Tsai

April 19, 2019 @ 1:14 pm

In this accessible and wide-ranging work, American University law professor Robert L. Tsai offers a stirring account of how legal ideas that aren’t necessarily about equality at all—ensuring fair play, behaving reasonably, avoiding cruelty, and protecting free speech—have often been used to overcome resistance to justice and remain vital today.

Tsai, a leading expert on constitutional law who has written widely in the popular press, traces challenges to equality throughout American history: from the oppression of emancipated slaves after the Civil War to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II to President Trump’s ban on Muslim travelers. He applies lessons from these and other past struggles to such pressing contemporary issues as the rights of sexual minorities and the homeless, racism in the criminal justice system, police brutality, voting restrictions, oppressive measures against migrants, and more.

Filed under history, Justiice, law, social justice · Comments

Slavery by Another Name - Author Douglas Blackmon

April 5, 2019 @ 10:27 am

Slavery by Another Name challenges one of Americans’ most cherished assumptions: the belief that slavery in this country ended with the Emancipation Proclamation. The film tells how even as chattel slavery came to an end in the South in 1865, thousands of African Americans were pulled back into forced labor with shocking force and brutality. It was a system in which men, often guilty of no crime at all, were arrested, compelled to work without pay, repeatedly bought and sold, and coerced to do the bidding of masters. Slavery by Another Name gives voice to the largely forgotten victims and perpetrators of forced labor and features their descendants living today.

Douglas Blackmon, the author of the book this documentary is based on, joined us post-screening to talk about what led him to tackle this project and how these problems and their history continue to haunt the American discourse to this day.

Recorded on February 9, 2019

Filed under black culture, history, Atlanta, Justiice, black history, slavery, american history, Mass incarceration · Comments

The Legend of the Black Mecca- Dr. Maurice J. Hobson

August 3, 2018 @ 2:09 pm

The Auburn Avenue Research Library in collaboration with Georgia State University's Alonzo A. Crim Center hosted Assistant Professor of African American Studies at Georgia State University, Dr. Maurice J. Hobson who discussed his publication, The Legend of the Black Mecca: Politics and Class in the Making of Modern Atlanta

Drawn from vivid primary sources and unnerving oral histories of working-class city-dwellers and hip-hop artists from Atlanta's underbelly, Hobson argues that Atlanta's political leadership has governed by bargaining with white business interests to the detriment ordinary black Atlantans. In telling this history, Hobson portrays a striking schism between the black political elite and poor city-dwellers.

Recorded October 25, 2017

Filed under black culture, history, Atlanta, hip hop · Comments

When Black Lives Matter: A Historical Perspective- Dr. Evelyn Higginbotham

July 24, 2018 @ 12:35 pm

In recognition of Women’s History Month (2017), the Auburn Avenue Research Library, in collaboration with the Atlanta Branch of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) and Georgia State University’s Department of African American Studies, hosted When Black Lives Matter: A Historical Perspective.

This lecture was facilitated by Dr. Evelyn Higginbotham, National President of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, and the Victor S. Thomas Professor of History and of African and African American Studies at Harvard University


Recorded on March 17, 2017

Filed under black culture, history, Atlanta, Justiice, Blacklivesmatter · Comments

Truth and Justice: The Central Park Five- Journalist Rose Scott

July 6, 2018 @ 9:37 am

The Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History, in collaboration with the Southern Center for Human Rights, hosted Truth and Justice: A Conversation with the Central Park 5.

This community dialogue explored the contemporary relevance of the 1989 miscarriage of justice that engulfed Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise.

 Recorded on June 6, 2018

Filed under black culture, history, Atlanta, Justiice · Comments

Where Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn- Author Gary Pomerantz

July 6, 2018 @ 9:35 am

The Auburn Avenue Research Library hosted Gary Pomerantz, a former journalist for the AJC and The Washington Post who now lives in San Francisco and lectures at Stanford University, discussing the book Where Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn, originally published in 1996.

Where Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn documents the history of Atlanta — from Civil War through Civil Rights, and leading up to the city’s hosting of the 1996 Summer Olympics — through two prominent families: the Ivan Allens, and John Wesley Dobbs and his progeny.


Recorded on May 31, 2018

Filed under black culture, history, Atlanta · Comments

Contested Bodies: Pregnancy, Childrearing, and Slavery in Jamaica- Dr. Sasha Turner

July 2, 2018 @ 7:53 pm

The Auburn Avenue Research Library in collaboration with The Baton Foundation hosted Dr. Sasha Turner, Associate Professor of History at Quinnipiac University, discussing her publication, Contested Bodies: Pregnancy, Childrearing, and Slavery in Jamaica.

Drawing on a wide range of sources, Contested Bodies yields a fresh account of how the end of the slave trade changed the bodily experiences of those enslaved in Jamaica.


Recorded on October 8, 2017

Filed under black culture, feminism, afro caribbean, history · Comments

Auburn Avenue Research Library Event Series
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