“Black Power and the Spirit of Student Activism,” a conversation with professor emeritus Ekwueme Michael Thelwell and alumnus Stanley Kinard, will be presented Thursday, March 12 at 7 p.m. at the Augusta Savage Gallery in New Africa House.
Talvin Wilks, visiting artist in residence, will lead the talk that will focus on the founding of New Africa House and the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies in 1970. The trio will also draw connections between the successes of that revolutionary era and the growing student activism both on campus and across the nation today.
Thelwell served as the first chair of the department of Afro-American studies. He served as member of the faculty until his retirement in 2009. Kinard was a prominent student leader at UMass in the 1970s and continues his work as a major community activist and innovative educator in Brooklyn, his home community.
Wilks is a playwright, director and dramaturg who is in residence at the university in the department of theater. He is a key collaborator in Art, Legacy, and Community, a research project developed by faculty members Judyie Al-Bilali, Gilbert McCauley and Priscilla Page.
Art, Legacy, and Communityis a two-year exploration supported by the department of theater, Afro-American studies, Commonwealth Honors College, the President’s Creative Economy Fund, a Public Service Endowment Grant, Arts at Amherst and MOSAIC, the Five College Multicultural Theater Committee.