News about the John Novak Archive: Four interviews from the Civil Rights Collection featured in New Book

9780988893702_p0_v1_s260x420The recently published (2013) book, Belles of Liberty: Gender, Bennett College And The Civil Rights Movement includes four interviews collected by Dr. Dena Scher as primary sources. The book details the actions of women from Bennett College in the historic 1960 Sit-in demonstrations at Woolworths lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina. These demonstrations resulted in a wave of similar sit-ins, which led to the integration of public restaurants.

The author, Linda Beatrice Brown, states, “The activism of the Bennett women happened because it was a logical outgrowth of an authentic liberal education with its commitment to democratic principles. (Brown,  2013, p. 150).  In 2004, 2010, and 2011, Professor Scher traveled to Greensboro, NC and Chicago, IL to collect the oral histories of Bennett alumnae.

The interviews included in Belles of Liberty were the recollections of Yvonne Revell, Gwendolyn Mackel Rice, Roslyn Smith, and Esther Terry.

You can listen to the audio and read the transcripts of the Bennett College interviews at the Novak website: http://research.marygrove.edu/novakinterviews/civil_rights.html

Besides the Civil Rights interviews, the Novak Collection has been recognized for its interviews on migrations to Detroit. The migration interviews were featured in the 2011 book, “The Great Migration North: 1919-1970″ and as a featured educational link for IN MOTION: The African-American Migration Experience: The Second Great Migration”. IN MOTION was developed by The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. You can link to it here: http://www.inmotionaame.org/migrations/links.cfm?migration=9&src=edu

The Great Migration North: 1919-1979 can be found in the Marygrove Library reference room with call number 307.2 H242 2011.

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