Dr. Shana Russell, literary scholar, historian, storyteller, organizer, and assistant professor of English at Bard High School Early College (BHSEC) Newark, will deliver the 24th W.E.B. Du Bois Memorial Lecture at Bard College at Simon's Rock. As reported in a press release,  Russell will deliver the Lecture and participate in a Q&A this Monday, Feb. 22, from 8:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. EST. The event is free and open to the public and will be broadcast live via Zoom.

Russell's talk, "Storytelling in Times of Crisis: Using the Past to Fight for Justice in the Present,” will draw from the work of W.E.B. Du Bois and the NAACP publication, The Crisis, to explore how storytelling, history, and academic discourse can inform the organization of movements and activism.

A board member of the Alliance for Higher Education in Prison, Russell will draw from her expertise as a domestic worker rights movements scholar and a public historian to discuss her own experience with organizing and with the #CloseRikers movement, an effort demanding the closure of the New York City jail complex and the reinvestment of capital to community support programs. Russell will also share her thoughts on how teaching, learning, and equity in education can contribute to broader social change movements.

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John B. Weinstein, Provost and Vice President of Simon's Rock made the following statement:

When I initially saw Dr. Russell speak about her activism in the #CloseRikers movement, I knew that her work would strike a chord with the Simon’s Rock community. I’m thrilled she will join us to demonstrate how research and theoretical study can translate to real-world change and activism—a nexus that is deeply important for our students and our broader community.

Established in 1996, the annual W.E.B. Du Bois Memorial Lecture is given each year by a distinguished individual whose own achievements carry on the legacy of Du Bois. Recent visitors include Keeanga Yamahtta-Taylor, David Levering Lewis, Lorene Cary, John Edgar Wideman, Sonia Sanchez, and Penelope Andrews. The Lecture is one of many ways Simon's Rock draws inspiration from Du Bois.

You can Learn more about the event including information to join the lecture by going here.

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