Charis welcomes Michelle Duster in conversation with Dr. Catherine Meeks for a celebration of Ida B. The Queen: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Ida B. Wells. This event is co-sponsored by the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History.
Ida B. the Queen tells the awe-inspiring story of an pioneering woman who was often overlooked and underestimated—a woman who refused to exit a train car meant for white passengers; a woman brought to light the horrors of lynching in America; a woman who cofounded the NAACP. Written by Wells’s great-granddaughter Michelle Duster, this “warm remembrance of a civil rights icon” (Kirkus Reviews) is a unique visual celebration of Wells’s life, and of the Black experience.
A century after her death, Wells’s genius is being celebrated in popular culture by politicians, through song, public artwork, and landmarks. Like her contemporaries Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony, Wells left an indelible mark on history—one that can still be felt today. As America confronts the unfinished business of systemic racism, Ida B. the Queen pays tribute to a transformational leader and reminds us of the power we all hold to smash the status quo.
This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices. https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/CharisCircle?code=chariscirclepage
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Michelle Duster is a writer, speaker, professor, and champion of racial and gender equity. In the last dozen years, she has written, edited, or contributed to eleven books. She cowrote the popular children’s history book, Tate and His Historic Dream; coedited Shifts and Michelle Obama’s Impact on African American Women and Girls; and edited two books that include the writings of her great-grandmother, Ida B. Wells. She has written articles for Essence, Refinery29, HuffPost, Teen Vogue, and The North Star.
Catherine Meeks, PhD, is the retired Clara Carter Acree Distinguished Professor of Socio-Cultural Studies at Wesleyan College and the Director of the Absalom Jones Center for Racial Healing. She has long been a strong advocate for social justice, community, and wellness. She is the author of several books, including Living Into God's Dream and Passionate for Justice: Ida B. Wells as Prophet for Our Time.
Journalist. Suffragist. Antilynching crusader. In 1862, Ida B. Wells was born enslaved in Holly Springs, Mississippi. In 2020, she won a Pulitzer Prize.
Ida B. Wells committed herself to the needs of those who did not have power. In the eyes of the FBI, this made her a “dangerous negro agitator.” In the annals of history, it makes her an icon.
In Passionate for Justice, we find a compass that points us to the future, where we can each give voice and action to justice, equity, and life-giving community. Ida Wells would have had it no other way.
--From the Foreword by Stacey Abrams, 2018 Democratic Nominee for Governor of Georgia