Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. January 2021

Martin Luther King, Jr's birthday celebrations are held annually on the third Monday of January, following his birthday on January 15th. The 2021 holiday is Monday, January 18th. The Office of Inclusion and Engagement would like to extend a special thanks to the Office of the President, the Washington and Lee University School of Law and The Division of Student Affairs for their support of this week's events.

2021 Schedule of Events

Monday, January 18

Children's Celebration in honor of Dr. King's Birthday
11:30am – 1:00pm

Stop by Sweet Treats Bakery for a cupcake and gift bag to celebrate Dr. King's birthday!

April Ryan Virtual Event
6:00pm

Registration Required - Click here!

White House Correspondent April Ryan has a unique vantage point as the only black female reporter covering urban issues from the White House - a position she has held since the Clinton era. On behalf of the American Urban Radio Networks, and through her "Fabric of America" news blog, she delivers her readership and listeners (millions of African Americans and close to 300 radio affiliates) a "unique urban and minority perspective in news." Her position as a White House Correspondent has afforded her unusual insight into the racial sensitivities, issues, and attendant political struggles of our nation's past presidents.

April can be seen almost daily on CNN as a political analyst. She has been featured in Essence, Vogue, Cosmopolitan and Elle magazines - to name a few.

April Ryan has served on the board of the prestigious White House Correspondents Association. She is one of only three African Americans in the Association's over 100-year history to serve on its board. She is also an esteemed member of the National Press Club. In 2015, Ms. Ryan was nominated for an NAACP Image Award (Outstanding Literary Work - Debut Author) for her first book. 2016 National Council of Negro Women, Mary McCloud Bethune Trailblazer. In 2019, April Ryan became an honorary member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated and was recognized as the 2019 Freedom of the Press Award Winner by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

April is a Baltimore native and Morgan State University graduate, and she gives back to this community by serving as a mentor to aspiring journalists and assisting with developing "up and coming" broadcasters. April considers her greatest life's work raising her two daughters, Ryan and Grace - who are phenomenal young women.

April Ryan is the author of the award-winning book, ​The Presidency in Black and White​ , and ​At Mama's Knee: Mothers and Race in Black and White​ (December 2016), where she looks at race relations through the lessons and wisdom that mothers have given their children. Her latest book is ​Under Fire: Reporting from the Front Lines of the Trump White House.

Virtual Film Screening and Discussion: I Am Not Your Negro
7:30pm – 9:30pm

Email Kelsey Goodwin to Join!

Based on James Baldwin's unfinished book, this visual essay explores racism through the stories of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. Email kgoodwin@wlu.edu for the link (make sure you have an active Netflix account and Netflix Party plug-in downloaded to your browser prior to screening). Join us to watch and discuss.




Tuesday, January 19

Virtual Film Screening and Discussion: The 13th
7:00pm – 9:00pm

Email Kelsey Goodwin to Join!

In this thought-provoking documentary, scholars, activists and politicians analyze the criminalization of African Americans and the U.S. prison boom. Email kgoodwin@wlu.edu for the link (make sure you have an active Netflix account and Netflix Party plug-in downloaded to your browser prior to screening). Join us to watch and discuss.




Wednesday, January 20

Virtual Film Screening and Discussion: The Two Killings of Sam Cooke
7:00pm – 9:00pm

Email Kelsey Goodwin to Join!

While Sam Cooke rose to stardom as a soul singer, his outspoken views on civil rights drew attention that may have contributed to his death at age 33. Join us to watch and discuss this recent documentary. Email kgoodwin@wlu.edu for the link (make sure you have an active Netflix account and Netflix Party plug-in downloaded to your browser prior to screening). Join us to watch and discuss.






Thursday, January 21

Virtual Film Screening and Discussion: The Trial of the Chicago 7
7:00pm – 9:00pm

Email Kelsey Goodwin to Join!

What was supposed to be a peaceful protest turned into a violent clash with the police. What followed was one of the most notorious trials in American history. Join us to watch and discuss this recent documentary. Email kgoodwin@wlu.edu for the link (make sure you have an active Netflix account and Netflix Party plug-in downloaded to your browser prior to screening). Join us to watch and discuss.


Friday, January 22

MLK Shabbat
6pm

Advanced registration required. Register Here!

W&L Hillel and the Office of Inclusion and Engagement invite you to join for our MLK Reflections Shabbat Service, celebrating of the life of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Friday, Jan 22, 2021, 6-7pm ET via Zoom. This year's event will be a combination of two beloved campus traditions: The Reflections Dinner and MLK Shabbat. Speakers will include students, faculty, and staff as well as members of our wider Lexington community and will conclude with a brief service to welcome Shabbat.

W&L Hillel also offers Shabbatote bags that include materials to help you create your own Shabbat experience at home. Use the link below to request your own Shabbatote.

Shabbatote Request Form

Virtual Film Screening and Discussion: The Social Dilemma
7:00pm – 9:00pm

Email Kelsey Goodwin to Join!

This documentary-drama hybrid explores the dangerous human impact of social networking, with tech experts sounding the alarm on their own creations. Join us to watch and discuss this recent documentary. Email kgoodwin@wlu.edu for the link (make sure you have an active Netflix account and Netflix Party plug-in downloaded to your browser prior to screening). Join us to watch and discuss.




Sunday, January 24

Dr. Eddie Glaude Virtual Event
6pm
This talk is made possible by the Class of 1960 Endowment for the Institute For Honor.

Registration Required - Click here!

One of the nation's most prominent scholars, Eddie S. Glaude, Jr. is an author, political commentator, public intellectual and passionate educator who examines the complex dynamics of the American experience. His writings, including ​Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul​, ​In a Shade of Blue: Pragmatism and the Politics of Black America​ , and his most recent, the ​New York Times ​ bestseller, ​Begin Again: James Baldwin's America and Its Urgent Lessons for our Own​ , takes a wide look at Black communities, the difficulties of race in the United States and the challenges we face as a democracy. In his writing and speaking, Glaude is an American critic in the tradition of James Baldwin and Ralph Waldo Emerson, confronting history and bringing our nation's complexities, vulnerabilities and hope into full view. Hope that is, in one of his favorite quotes from W.E.B. Dubois, "not hopeless, but a bit hopeful."

Glaude is the James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor and Chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton. He frequently appears in the media, as a columnist for ​TIME ​ Magazine and as an MSNBC contributor on programs like ​Morning Joe ​ and ​Deadline Whitehouse with Nicolle Wallace​ . He regularly appears on ​Meet the Press ​ on Sundays. Glaude also hosts Princeton's AAS podcast, a conversation around the field of African American Studies and the Black experience in the 21st century.

A highly accomplished and respected scholar of religion, Glaude is a former president of the American Academy of Religion. His books on religion and philosophy include ​An Uncommon Faith: A Pragmatic Approach to the Study of African American Religion​ , ​African American Religion: A Very Short Introduction​ , and Exodus! Religion, Race and Nation in Early 19th Century Black America​ , which was awarded the Modern Language Association's William Sanders Scarborough Book Prize.

Some like to describe Glaude as the quintessential Morehouse man, having left his home in Moss Point, Mississippi at age 16 to begin studies at the HBCU and alma mater of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He holds a master's degree in African American Studies from Temple University and a Ph.D. in Religion from Princeton University.

Glaude is known both for his inspiring oratory and ability to convene conversations that engage fellow citizens from all backgrounds — from young activists to corporate audiences looking for a fresh perspective on DEI. In 2011, he delivered Harvard's DuBois lectures. His 2015 commencement remarks at Colgate University titled, "Turning Our Backs," was recognized by the ​New York Times ​ as one of the best commencement speeches of the year.

Combining a scholar's knowledge of history, a political commentator's take on the latest events, and an activist's passion for social justice, Glaude challenges all of us to examine our collective American conscience, "not to posit the greatness of America, but to establish the ground upon which to imagine the country anew."

View images from past W&L Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebrations