Freedom Summer archives central to Black History Month lecture

By Shawn Vanness, communications specialist 

The University Libraries will welcome assistant professor Stephanie Danker for a talk commemorating Black History Month on Wednesday, Feb. 12 at noon in King 320. Danker’s lecture, entitled Art and Activism: Looking Closer at Historical Documentary Photographs and Contemporary Images, uses the University Libraries’ Freedom Summer Text & Photo Archive to examine artists’ responses to the civil rights movement.

Freedom Summer Archive

The Freedom Summer Text & Photo Archive is a collection of newspaper clippings, correspondence, photographs, and other materials available online to the public. Created in 2009 with a grant from the Ohio Humanities Council, the archive documents this significant part of history during which the Freedom Summer Project organized voter registration of African Americans in the southern states. Also known as the Mississippi Summer Project of 1964, the movement was a collaboration of the Congress of Federated Organizations (COFO], Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and the National Council of Churches. The students held orientation sessions on the campus of the former Western College for Women, which merged with Miami University in 1974.

Art and Activism

Danker’s lecture uses the Herbert Randall Collection to examine the artists’ responses to events during the civil rights movement and the inspiration for activism through art. 
Danker earned her Ph.D. in Art Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is an assistant professor of art education in the department of art at Miami University. Danker served as a fellow at the 2017 National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute hosted at Harvard University, "What Happened to the Civil Rights Movement?" and her research interests include Miami University’s Freedom Summer Project of 1964.

Join us

Please join us on Wednesday, Feb. 12 in King 320. There will be a pop-up exhibition of Freedom Summer items and a reception to follow the lecture.