Presenters: Gary D. Schmidt, Ilyasah Shabazz
Moderator: Colby Sharp
History officially recognizes the civil rights movement as something that began in the mid-1950s. One could argue, however, that it began at least a century earlier, or even earlier still, when any minority voiced its demands for equality. Sojourner Truth is one of America's most well remembered and well respected figureheads for the rights of women and African Americans. She escaped slavery in her early 30s and campaigned tirelessly the rest of her adult life for the freedoms she considered to be God given to all people. She died in Battle Creek, Michigan about 50 years before the birth of another indomitable woman who fought for these same rights. Betty Shabazz lived some of her most formative adolescent years in Detroit before her future as the wife and partner of Malcolm X was even a fleeting thought. Despite having lived decades apart, these women's lives both reflect a history that is very much alive in our present. Join two exceptional writers as they converse about how they approach the retelling of such powerful stories.