Diverse Dialogues is an ongoing series presented by the Langston Hughes Center at the University of Kansas and Lawrence Public Library where we explore topics surrounding issues of race and culture.
For February Dr. Randal Jelks and Dr. Elizabeth Esch will talk about their latest books, Faith and Struggle in the Lives of Four African Americans: Ethel Waters, Mary Lou Williams, Eldridge Cleaver, and Muhammad Ali, and The Color Line and the Assembly Line: Managing Race in the Ford Empire respectively.
About Dr. Randal Jelks
I am a knee-grow from NOLA (New Orleans) byway of Chicago and all other parts of the globe. I am also a Professor of African and African American Studies and American Studies at the University of Kansas. I am the author of three books that I hope you will read: African Americans in the Furniture City: The Struggle for Civil Rights Struggle in Grand Rapids, which was awarded the 2006 State History Award, University and Commercial Press, Historical Society of Michigan; Benjamin Elijah Mays, Schoolmaster of the Movement: A Biography, awarded the 2013 Lillian Smith Book Award and the 2013 Literary Award, Black Caucus of the American Library Association; and Faith and Struggle in the Lives of Four Africans: Ethel Waters, Mary Lou Williams, Eldridge Cleaver, Muhammad Ali. I write about people, places, and issues I care about. I write, using the lyrical phrase of the R&B artist Rick James, because "I was born to funk and roll in the Big Time!"
About Dr. Elizabeth Esch
Elizabeth D. Esch is Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of Kansas. She is the coauthor, with David Roediger, of The Production of Difference: Race and the Management of Labor in US History.