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Community Read continues in April

Posted 03/23/15

Fitchburg State University’s year-long Community Read of legal scholar Michelle Alexander's The New Jim Crow continues on Wednesday, April 1 at 3:30 p.m. with a screening of the Oscar-winning film 12 Years a Slave in Ellis White Lecture Hall in Hammond Hall, 160 Pearl St. Admission is free and pizza will be served.

Solomon Northup’s memoir traces his life as a freeman living in New York before being drugged, kidnapped and sold into slavery in the Deep South. The acclaimed film adaptation won several Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

The Community Read programming will continue with a panel discussion on race and the criminal justice system on Thursday, April 9 at 3:30 p.m. at the Leominster Public Library. The talk will feature faculty members Jason Nwankwo (Behavioral Sciences) and Ben Railton (English Studies). Admission is free.

On Thursday, April 16 at 4 p.m., the Community Read reaches downtown with the Third Thursday Film Series screening of Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (1974) at the Fitchburg Public Library, 610 Main St. Admission is free. The film tells the tale of an almost-accidental romance that is kindled between a German woman in her mid-60s and a Moroccan migrant worker about 25 years younger. They abruptly decide to marry, appalling everyone around them. Fitchburg State faculty member Rala Diakite will introduce the screening and lead a post-film discussion.

The discussion returns to campus on Thursday, April 30 at 3:30 p.m. for a symposium and discussion of law and race to be held at Ellis White Lecture Hall in Hammond Hall. The discussion will be moderated by Fitchburg State faculty member Eric Boehme. Admission is free, and panelists will include:

  • New York Law School Professor Nadine Strossen, an educator, author, lecturer and seasoned lawyer in the areas of constitutional law, civil liberties and international human rights.
  • American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts Staff Attorney Carlton Williams, an activist and organizer on issues of war, immigrants’ rights, LGBT rights, racial justice and Palestinian self-determination.
  • Amherst College Senior Lecturer David Delaney, an educator and author focused on law, jurisprudence and social thought.

The Community Read wraps up in May with a Third Thursday screening of the acclaimed film The Defiant Ones at the Fitchburg Public Library on Thursday, May 21 at 4 p.m. Faculty member Joseph Moser will introduce the tale of two escaped convicts chained together, one white and one black, who must learn to get along in order to elude capture.

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