MANCHESTER — Pulitzer-winning historian and filmmaker Douglas Blackmon will speak about and offer a preview of his documentary film “The Harvest” in a talk at Manchester’s Burr and Burton Academy auditorium, the Riley Center for the Arts, on Tuesday, April 24 at 7 p.m. His talk, “Race at Ground Zero: Integration in Leland, Mississippi,” is part of the Vermont Humanities Council’s First Wednesdays lecture series and was rescheduled from February. Talks in Manchester are hosted by Manchester Community Library and are free and open to the public.
The Harvest looks at the failure of public school integration and its relation to our nation’s current racial turmoil, as seen through the eyes of people born in 1964 in Blackmon’s hometown of Leland, Mississippi—the state’s first students to attend integrated classrooms from K to 12. Blackmon will share clips from his film and discuss the story behind it.
Blackmon has written extensively over the past 25 years about the American quandary of race—exploring the integration of schools during his childhood in a Mississippi Delta farm town, lost episodes of the Civil Rights movement, and, repeatedly, the dilemma of how a contemporary society should grapple with a troubled past. He is the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II, and the host and executive producer of American Forum, a weekly public affairs program broadcast weekly on PBS stations across the U.S. He also produced the blockbuster PBS documentary based on Slavery by Another Name. Before 2012, Blackmon was a bureau chief and senior national correspondent at The Wall Street Journal, where he wrote about or directed coverage of some of the most pivotal stories in recent American life, including the election of President Barack Obama, the rise of the tea party movement, and the BP oil spill.
Please note the change of venue for this First Wednesdays talk, Burr and Burton Academy’s Riley Center for the Arts, and that it is on a Tuesday instead of a Wednesday, on April 24.