Durham News

Civil rights talk, comic drawing workshop highlight Durham Reads Together Week 3

A scene from “March: Book One” by civil rights activist and Congressman John Lewis of Georgia
A scene from “March: Book One” by civil rights activist and Congressman John Lewis of Georgia

Durham County Library continues its month-long celebration of Durham Reads Together 2014 with a lecture, panel discussions and a program on drawing comics for teens, scheduled Sunday, Oct. 19, through Thursday, Oct. 23. This year’s Durham Reads Together features “March: Book One” by Congressman John Lewis.

The week’s activities begin with the program “SNCC and John Lewis” by Dr. Wesley Hogan, at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 19, at the Main Library, 300 N. Roxboro St. Hogan will lead a discussion of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the young John Lewis’s involvement. SNCC worked throughout the South in the 1960s, and their use of grassroots activism and democratic practice helped change the focus of the Civil Rights Movement. Hogan is the author of “Many Minds, One Heart: SNCC’s Dream for a New America,” and is a noted documentary historian of the Civil Rights Movement. He is the director of the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. A book signing will follow the talk. This program is co-sponsored by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University.

The library will then present a panel discussion, “The Social Gospel and the Civil Rights Movement,” at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 21, at the Main Library, 300 N. Roxboro St. WUNC’s Frank Stasio will moderate as panelists both investigate the religious roots of the Civil Rights Movement and discuss the present-day intersection of religious thought and social reform. Panelists include the Rev. Eboni Marshall Turman, professor at Duke Divinity School; the Rev. Jimmie Hawkins, Covenant Presbyterian Church; Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, Rutba House and director of the School for Conversion; and Jarvis Hall, professor at N.C. Central University and director of the Institute for Civic Engagement and Social Change.

On Thursday, Oct. 23, the library will present Teen Auto-Bio Comics, a hands-on program on making comics, at 6 p.m. at East Regional Library, 211 Lick Creek Lane. Local cartoonist Eric Knisley will demonstrate and teach tweens and teens basic comic drawing techniques. In honor of “March: Book One,” participants will draw a comic illustrating one important moment or event in their lives. Tweens and teens are encouraged to bring their doodling ideas. Refreshments will be provided. This program is co-sponsored by Durham Comics Fest.

Durham Reads Together, sponsored by the Friends of the Durham Library and Durham Library Foundation, invites the entire community to read the same book and attend programs around its theme, inspiring discussions on important issues including race, family, identity, faith, education, culture, music and visual art. “March: Book One,” co-written by Andrew Aydin and illustrated by Nate Powell, is a first-hand account of Lewis’s lifelong fight for civil rights, exploring the distance traveled since the days of Jim Crow and segregation. “March” is rooted in Lewis’s personal story, but also reflects on the highs and lows of the broader civil rights movement. The first installation of a trilogy, Book One spans Lewis’s youth in rural Alabama, his life-changing meeting with Martin Luther King, Jr., the birth of the Nashville Student Movement and the battle to tear down segregation through nonviolent lunch counter sit-ins. Lewis is the Democratic representative from Georgia’s 5th District.

A complete listing of Durham Reads Together programs and events can be found at durhamreadstogether.org. For more information call Joanne Abel at 919-560-0268 or visit durhamcountylibrary.org.