Title of Lecture

Breakout, Before You Get Bumrushed!: Migration, Community Building, and Self- Defense in the Black American West, 1898-1968


Kalenda C. Eaton

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Date of Lecture


Description of Lecture

Eaton’s lecture will look at the post- Reconstruction period when groups of African American citizens discovered a “new Canaan” in the American West as they fled domestic terrorism and a lack of opportunity in the South. Ironically, the freedom the vast territory afforded the settlers also created a need for self-protection from external threats. This presentation will examine historical fiction chronicling the era and how three predominantly black communities in Oklahoma, Kansas, and northern California responded to the threat of violence. Specific novelists and playwrights discussed will include Jewell Parker Rhodes, Pearl Cleage, Toni Morrison, and Ishmael Reed.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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