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Weekly Blog

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Prof. Clayborne Carson visits Sarvodaya: 6th March 2008

Prof. Clayborne Carson spoke at the Sarvodaya meeting on March 6th. He gave an eloquent speech about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his efforts in America. Prof. Carson spoke about the many who had come before Dr. King, such as Rosa Parks, in the fight for civil rights in America. He made a strong point that we should not forget the many people involved in the fight to end segregation in the US. He also talked about the time Dr. King first heard of Gandhi's methods from Mordecai Johnson's sermon.

Prof. Carson mentioned his work with the Martin Luther King Papers Project on campus and warmly invited all students to come visit the center where the work is taking place. After Prof. Carson's talk, there was a vigorous discussion about education issues.

It was very interesting to hear about the civil rights movement and Dr. King's leadership. We hope that Prof. Carson will return to give us a more in depth look at what made Dr. King who he was: what were the key events in his life, including in his childhood, that shaped his opinions and that led to some of his key decisions.

Video of Talk

About Dr. Carson
Dr. Clayborne Carson has devoted his professional life to the study of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the movements King inspired. Since receiving his doctorate from UCLA in 1975, Dr. Carson has taught at Stanford University, where he is now professor of history and founding director of the Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute. He has also been a visiting professor at American University, the University of California, Berkeley, and Emory University as well as a Fellow at the Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford.

During his undergraduate years at UCLA, Dr. Carson participated in civil rights and antiwar protests, and many of his subsequent writings reflect his experiences by stressing the importance of grassroots political activity within the African-American freedom struggle. His first book, In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening of the 1960s, remains the definitive history of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, the most dynamic and innovative civil rights organization.

In 1985 the late Coretta Scott King invited Dr. Carson to direct a long-term project to edit and publish the papers of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This project was initiated by the King Center in Atlanta and is being conducted under the auspices of the King Institute at Stanford in association with the King Estate. Under Dr. Carson’s direction, the King Papers Project, a component of the Institute, has produced six volumes of The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr. -- a projected fourteen-volume comprehensive edition of King’s speeches, sermons, correspondence, publications, and unpublished writings. In addition to these volumes, he has written or co-edited numerous other works based on the papers, including A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998); The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998), compiled from the King’s autobiographical writings; and A Call to Conscience: The Landmark Speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (2001). The King Institute's enormously popular website -- kinginstitute.info -- reaches a diverse, global audience, and the Liberation Curriculum initiative that Dr. Carson conceived has become a major source of educational materials about King and the ongoing struggles to achieve peace with social justice.

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