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Calvin To Celebrate African American History
January 13, 2006

Calvin College will present a variety of events in early February as part of its celebration of African American History Month.

Dr. Randal JelksCalvin has a new minor in African and African American Diaspora Studies and professor Randal Jelks is director of that program (as well as author of the soon-to-be-released African Americans in the Furniture City: The Struggle for Civil Rights).

He says it's important for the next generation of leaders, including college students, to both prepare for the future and remember the past.

The upcoming events at Calvin will help students, and others, do both.

Titled "Five Days in the Black World," the series includes special chapels, a history of coffee, a panel discussion on Africa and the diaspora, several films, a discussion on Grand Rapids' black leaders and more (see complete schedule below).

"I think it's a good series," says Jelks. "My hope is that it will appeal not just to Calvin students, but anyone in west Michigan interested in learning more about black history."

NOTE: Download a high-res image of Jelks (JPEG, 69K)

SCHEDULE

Monday, February 6

  • 10 am - special African American History Month chapel in the Calvin Chapel

  • Noon - "From Africa to the Americas: A 15 Minute History of Coffee" - Calvin Coffee Shop (in the Cave)

  • 3:30 pm - Panel Discussion on Africa and its Diasporas - Meeter Center Lecture Hall

  • 8 pm - Screening of "Rosewood," directed by John Singelton - Science Building 110 (with a talkback sponsored by the Black Knights Forum afterwards)

Tuesday, February 7

  • All Day - Student Reading Events at Ottawa Montessori, Alexander, Buchanan and Potter's House

  • 10 am - special African American History Month chapel in the Calvin Chapel

  • Noon - "What Do You Know About African Americans History?-Take a Quiz" - Coffee Shop (in the Cave)

  • Noon - "Africans in the Americas" by professor Michael Gomez of NYU - President's Dining Room

  • 3:30 pm - Public Lecture by professor Michael Gomez, NYU, and the author of The Black Crescent: The Experience and Legacy of African Muslims in the Americas - Meeter Center Lecture Hall

  • 7 pm - Panel Discussion on "Who is a Black Leader in Grand Rapids?" sponsored by the Black Knights Forum - room TBA

Wednesday, February 8

  • 10 am - special African American History Month chapel in the Calvin Chapel

  • Noon - "How Big is the African Continent?-Take a Quiz" Calvin Coffee Shop (in the Cave)

  • Noon - Faculty Workshop with professor Nwando Achebe, MSU - President's Dining Room

  • 3:30 pm - Public Lecture by professor Nwando Achebe, Michigan State University, and the author of Farmers, Traders, Warriors and King: Female Power and Authority in Northern Igboland 1900-1960 - Chapel Undercroft

  • 8 pm -Screening of "In My Country" starring Samuel L. Jackson
    (with a talkback sponsored by the AADS Program)

Thursday, February 9

  • All Day - Student Reading Events at Ottawa Montessori, Alexander, Buchanan and Potter's House

  • 10 am - special African American History Month chapel in the Calvin Chapel

  • Noon - Faculty Workshop with Dr. Yvonne Pierce, University of Kentucky - President's Dining Room

  • 3:30 pm - Public Lecture by professor Yolanda Pierce, University of Kentucky, and author of Hell Without Fires: Slavery, Christianity & the African American Spiritual Narrative - President's Dining Room

  • 6 pm - A lecture on "Is Egypt in Africa? Were the Pharaohs Black: Afrocentrism Fact or Fiction?" by Dr. Randal Maurice Jelks at the Public Museum in Grand Rapids

Friday, February 10

  • 10 am - special African American History Month chapel in the Calvin Chapel

  • 8 pm - "Express Yourself!" - spoken word, dance, readings and songs about the African experience in the Americas - Calvin Coffee Shop (in the Cave) (sponsored by the Black Knights Forum)

Saturday, February 11

  • Wealthy Theatre Program cosponsored by AADS, GVSU, and GRCC