Letters Archive
Spring 2004, Vol. 12, No. 2 (requires Adobe Acrobat)
  • Memento Morbi: Lam Qua’s Paintings, Peter Parker's Patients
  • Gender, Sexuality, and Political Action Conference
  • Educators Learn About Constitution in Regional Workshop
  • Brown v. Board of Education 50th Anniversary Commemorative Series
  • Race and Wealth Disparity in 21st-Century America
  • 2003/2004 Fellows

  • Brown v. Board of Education 50th Anniversary Commemorative Series

    The Warren Center is coordinating a year-long lecture series marking the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic Brown v. Board of Education decision. The Brown v. Board decision on May 17th, 1954, sparked a national debate in the United States that continues to this day. The lecture series provides opportunities to reexamine the place of this decision in U.S. history, as well as opportunities to reflect upon the future of public education in our nation. “Brown is the most compelling, accessible case in constitutional law. But its simplicity and rightness masked great complexity. We’re still coming to grips with it,” said Nick Zeppos, Vanderbilt’s Provost, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, and Professor of Law. The series is a University-wide project sponsored by fifteen departments on the campus.

    On January 20th, 2004, Juan Williams will present the annual Martin Luther King Lecture Series’ Keynote Address in the Ingram Auditorium at the Blair School of Music at 6:00 p.m. Williams is a leading U.S. political writer and is presently a senior correspondent for NPR and a political analyst for Fox Television. He is the author of three books: Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years, 1954-1965 (1987), Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary (1998), and This Far by Faith: Stories from the African-American Religious Experience (with Quinton Hosford Dixie, 2003). Noted singer and songwriter Kate Campbell will open for Juan Williams that evening by performing several songs about her experiences during the civil rights movement.

    Judge Damon Keith will be speaking on April 1st, 2004 as part of the Chancellor’s Lecture Series, and will be addressing issues related to Brown v. Board in his lecture. Judge Keith served as Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan from 1967 to 1977. President Jimmy Carter appointed him to the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, where he served until he took senior status in 1995. Judge Keith has received numerous honors and awards, including the NAACP’s highest award, the Spingarn Medal, the 1997 American Bar Association’s Thurgood Marshall Award, and the Distinguished Public Service Award for the National Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith. Time and location for this event will be announced.

    To close the series, Peabody College is sponsoring an all-day conference on Friday, April 2nd on the implications of the Brown decision. For more information about the conference, please contact Professor Ken Wong.

    The first two lectures in this series occurred during the fall semester. On Wednesday, October 8th, Michael Klarman, James Monroe Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Virginia spoke on “Brown v. Board of Education: Law or Politics?”. On November 13th, Gary Orfield, Professor of Education and Social Policy at Harvard, delivered a lecture titled “Brown v. Board After a Half Century: The Gains of Integration, the Consequences of Resegregation.”

    Letters Archive Index

    For more information, contact the Center's executive director, Mona C. Frederick.

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