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January 15, 2020
An aerial view of Detroit Mercy's campus.

Detroit Mercy celebrates Black History Month throughout February with a variety of events and engagements that are free and open to everyone.

Monday, Feb. 3

“Race: The Power of an Illusion” — an open conversation on race in America

McNichols Library, Bargman Room, Second Floor — 6:30-8:30 p.m.

“Race: The Power of an Illusion,” a three-part documentary series that explores the history of race and its impact on humans, is presented in three parts throughout Detroit Mercy’s celebration of Black History Month. Each presentation is followed by a panel response and audience discussion. This session focuses on the first episode of the documentary series, titled “The Difference Between Us,” and examines genetics and race. Those interested can attend any of the video series sessions during Black History Month. The video series is sponsored by Irene Lietz, a former adjunct professor at Detroit Mercy. 

Tuesday, Feb. 4

Interfaith dinner and dialogue

Student Union, Ballroom, Second Floor — 7 p.m.

A panel, facilitated by student organizations, discusses the evening’s topic: “what does religion say about non-violence and oppression?” This event is sponsored by University Ministry, Alumni Relations and Student Life.

Wednesday, Feb. 5

Book talk — Shonda Buchanan on Black Indian

Student Union, Ballroom, Second Floor — 6:45 p.m.

Buchanan, a Michigan native, award-winning poet and educator, discusses her memoir, which explores her family’s legacy of being African-Americans with American Indian roots and the societal exclusions the combination brought. This event is sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts & Education, African American Studies program and Black Abolitionist Archive. A book signing will follow the talk.

Monday, Feb. 10

“Race: The Power of an Illusion” — an open conversation on race in America

McNichols Library, Bargman Room, Second Floor — 6:30-8:30 p.m.

“Race: The Power of an Illusion,” is a three-part documentary series that explores the history of race and its impact on humans. This session focuses on the second episode of the documentary series, titled “The Story We Tell,” and details how identifying others by race is a recent concept. 

Friday, Feb. 14

Love Stories from the Underground Railroad

Student Union, Ballroom, Second Floor — 12-1 p.m.

Professor of History and Director of the Black Abolitionist Archive Roy E. Finkenbine, Detroit Mercy Theatre Company and University Chorus present the life, love and escape of Josiah and Charlotte Henson, African-American slaves who ran from bondage in Kentucky to freedom in Canada in 1830. A luncheon will be provided. This event is sponsored by Student Affairs, Black Abolitionist Archive, University Chorus and Detroit Mercy Theatre Company. Those interested in attending must RSVP to Associate Dean of Students Dorothy Stewart at stewardm@udmercy.edu by Monday, Jan. 27.

Monday, Feb. 17

“Race: The Power of an Illusion” — an open conversation on race in America

McNichols Library, Bargman Room, Second Floor — 6:30-8:30 p.m.

“Race: The Power of an Illusion,” is a three-part documentary series that explores the history of race and its impact on humans. This session focuses on the third episode of the documentary series, titled “The House We Live In,” which focuses on how individuals and institutions impact race and benefits certain groups of people.

Wednesday, Feb. 19

Book talk — Alex Zamalin on Black Utopia: The History of an Idea from Black Nationalism to Afrofuturism

Chemistry, Room 114 — 1-2 p.m.

Zamalin’s new book focuses on how the black utopian tradition challenges American political thought and culture. This event is sponsored by the African American Studies program. A book signing will follow the talk.

Friday, Feb. 21

Detroit Mercy Theatre Company presents “Pass Over”

Student Union, Grounds Coffeehaus — 7:30 p.m.

Moses and Kitch are dreaming of their promised land when a stranger derails their plans with his own agenda. Antoinette Nwandu’s drama, “Pass Over,” exhibits the spirit of young black men looking to escape the cycle they’re stuck in. This event is sponsored by Detroit Mercy Theatre Company. 

Monday, Feb. 24 (inclement weather makeup date)

“Race: The Power of an Illusion” — an open conversation on race in America

McNichols Library, Bargman Room, Second Floor — 6:30-8:30 p.m.

“Race: The Power of an Illusion,” is a three-part documentary series that explores the history of race and its impact on humans. This session is for an inclement weather makeup date.

Thursday, Feb. 27

Visiting Author — Rhae Lynn Barnes, “A Dangerous Unselfishness: A History of the Civil Rights Movement’s Fight to End Blackface in America”

Student Union, Ballroom, Second Floor — 6:45 p.m.

Barnes, an assistant professor at Princeton University, draws from her book in progress, which uncovers the unstudied bibliographic history of amateur blackface minstrel and reveals the United States government’s role in spreading the productions worldwide. This event is sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts & Education, African American Studies program and Black Abolitionist Archive.

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