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An evening with Dr. Peniel Joseph on Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X
Thu October 22, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm EDT
We are elated to announce that Dr. Peniel Joseph will join us for an evening of discussion about his new double biography of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. It is a stunning account of two men shaped and molded in Boston. Dr. Joseph is among our nation’s top historians. Register to attend.
Popular accounts of the 1960s-era civil rights movement are often reduced to the story of two extraordinary visionaries: Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. In his book The Sword and the Shield Peniel E. Joseph argues that by focusing on their differing doctrines of self-defense versus nonviolence, we’ve been blind to the scope of their shared activism and communion. Join Kevin Peterson and Dr. Peniel Joseph of a forthcoming biography on King, for a online conversation about how the legacies of these civil rights leaders informs the current struggle for racial justice.
This dual biography of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King upends longstanding preconceptions to transform our understanding of the twentieth century’s most iconic African American leaders.
To most Americans, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. represent contrasting ideals: self-defense vs. nonviolence, black power vs. civil rights, the sword vs. the shield. The struggle for black freedom is wrought with the same contrasts. While nonviolent direct action is remembered as an unassailable part of American democracy, the movement’s militancy is either vilified or erased outright. In The Sword and the Shield, Peniel E. Joseph upends these misconceptions and reveals a nuanced portrait of two men who, despite markedly different backgrounds, inspired and pushed each other throughout their adult lives. This is a strikingly revisionist biography, not only of Malcolm and Martin, but also of the movement and era they came to define.