Monday, January 16, 2017

Martin Luther King Day

It's Martin Luther King Day in the Archives.

While we have publications by/about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we do not have much in the way of archives.

The only cataloged archival item specific to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr we have in the archives is a cassette of a speech by bell hooks in which she quotes the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., whom she respected. A feminist thinker, bell hooks' (born Gloria Wakins) writings cover a broad range of topics. Hooks is the Distinguished Professor of English at City College in New York.

I"m excited to share that three 1/2 -inch EIAJ videotapes of the Feb. 14, 1974 CMU Black Symposium have been converted to a MP4 files which are currently on a harddrive. They have nationally famous African American poets reading their work, including Herbert Woodward Martin, who also sings during part of the recordings; Etheridge Knight who began writing while in prison; and Raymond Paterson.  They are all amazing. Both Knight and Patterson  read poems and make comments specifically about the death and political speeches at the funeral of Dr. Marking Luther King Jr. I have yet to hear/view the entire third tape recording and then catalog it and make it available.Also, of note, all three had at least some of their work published out of Detroit by Dudley Randall of Broadside Press. We have a large collection of Broadside Press. Randall established the press as well as the Poetry Foundation https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poets/detail/dudley-randall

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