Storyteller and educator Awele Makeba combines performing arts and history to tell a powerful story from the American civil rights movement.
Learn more about the life of Claudette Colvin. As Makeba asks, why do we know about Rosa Parks, but not Claudette Colvin? What happened to her afterBrowder v. Gayle? Create posters, pamphlets, or other materials describing Colvin’s contribution to the civil rights movement. Work with your local transit authority to display them in buses or subways in your community. Good resources include:
NPR: Before Rosa Parks, there was Claudette Colvin (03/15/09) http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=101719889
The New York Times: From footnote to fame in civil rights history (11/25/09) http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/26/books/26colvin.html
Library of Congress: Phillip M. Hoose and Claudette Colvin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5P1JB2R5CFw
Newsweek: A forgotten contribution (03/01/09) http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2009/03/01/a-forgotten-contribution
Acts of courage often inspire creative acts. Claudette Colvin’s story inspired Rita Dove to write the poem “Claudette Colvin Goes to Work.” Folk singer John McCutcheon set Dove’s poem to music and included it on his 2005 album Mightier Than the Sword(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POa8pO83xe4).
Learn about young people who are working for change in the world today. Pick one of them and create a story, song, painting, poem or other work of art that celebrates their efforts. Share these in your school or community. Good sources include:
Mario Savio Memorial Lecture Fund: Young Activist Award http://www.savio.org/young_activist_award.html
The New York Times: Young activists sue U.S., states over greenhouse gas emissions (05/05/2011) http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2011/05/05/05greenwire-young-activists-sue-us-states-over-greenhouse-64366.html?pagewanted=all
Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1985 http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/eyesontheprize/index.html
Teaching Tolerance http://www.tolerance.org/?source=redirect&url=teachingtolerance