Face to Face: Community Conversations
Face to Face: Community Conversations is a community-based discussion program that encourages dialogue on issues central to civic life in New Jersey. This program features film screening/discussion events and supplementary activities that work together to foster and sustain meaningful public conversations.
Created Equal: New Jersey
To mark the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) developed a special project as part of its Bridging Cultures initiative – Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle. Over the next four years, up to 500 communities across the nation will be hosting conversations centered on a curated collection of NEH-funded films, about the changing meanings of freedom and equality in U.S. history. To bring this national conversation home, the Council has adopted Created Equal: New Jersey as the theme for its own Face to Face: Community Conversations program in 2013.
Image: Courtesy Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, NYWT&S Collection
Join the Conversation
The Council has partnered with twelve New Jersey communities to offer three local program series. For students to seniors, these free documentary film series offer a unique opportunity to share personal experiences and reflections as part of a community-based conversation, facilitated by experienced local scholars.
Facilitated by Wayne Glasker
New Brunswick Area
Facilitated by Christopher Fisher
Facilitated by Mark Krasovic and Thomas McCabe
Created Equal Film Collection
A small group of moral reformers in the 1830s launched one of the most ambitious social movements imaginable: the immediate emancipation of millions of African Americans held in bondage, at a time when slavery was one of the most powerful economic and political forces in the United States. Produced and directed by Rob Rapley. Sharon Grimberg, executive producer for American Experience, WGBH.
Even as slavery ended in the south after the Civil War, new forms of forced labor kept thousands of African Americans in bondage until the onset of World War II. Based on the 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winning book of the same title by Douglas Blackmon. Produced and directed by Sam Pollard. Catherine Allan, executive producer for Twin Cities Public Television. Douglas A. Blackmon, co-executive producer. A production of TPT National Productions, in association with Two Dollars & A Dream, Inc.
The moving account of Richard and Mildred Loving, who were arrested in 1958 for violating Virginia’s ban on interracial marriage. Their struggle culminated in a landmark Supreme Court decision, Loving v. Virginia (1967) which overturned anti-miscegenation laws in the United States. Directed by Nancy Buirski; produced by Nancy Buirski and Elisabeth Haviland James. A co-production of Augusta Films and HBO Films. Distributed by Icarus Films.
The Freedom Rides of 1961 were a pivotal moment in the long Civil Rights struggle that redefined America. Based on Raymond Arsenault’s recent book, this documentary film offers an inside look at the brave band of activists who challenged segregation in the Deep South. Produced and directed by Stanley Nelson. Mark Samels, executive producer for American Experience, WGBH.
Meet the Scholars
Associate Professor of History, The College of New Jersey
A specialist in twentieth-century American diplomacy, the Cold War, and race politics in the United States, Professor Fisher teaches in the Departments of History and African-American Studies at the College of New Jersey. He has taught various classes on topics in twentieth-century, American diplomatic, and African-American history. He received his doctorate from Rutgers University’s Department of History.
Associate Professor of History, Rutgers-Camden
Wayne Glasker, Associate Professor (BA, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania) is a specialist in African American and 20th century U.S. history. His fields of expertise include slavery, the Harlem Renaissance, race and ethnicity, and the civil rights movement. Glasker has been a member of the history department since 1991. Dr. Glasker is the author of Black Students in the Ivory Tower: African American Student Activism at the University of Pennsylvania, 1967-1990. He is also a contributor to The Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance (Routledge, 2005) and a frequent reviewer for Choice Magazine.
Glasker served as the Director of the African American Studies Program from 1998 to 2011. He teaches a graduate colloquium in African American history. He is currently working on a new book about Malcolm X, James Baldwin and the critique of colorblind integration.
Assistant Professor and Associate Director of the Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience, Rutgers-Newark
Mark Krasovic received his PhD in American Studies from Yale University in 2008. His research and teaching interests center on the cultural and political history of the modern United States, urban history, and the public humanities. He is currently completing a book manuscript, The Great Society and the Urban Crisis: Newark and the Dilemma of American Liberalism, which examines how the structures of 1960s liberalism – structures that brought together government officials, academics, and local Newarkers in new and complicated ways – confronted the perceived crisis of America’s cities. The manuscript is based on his dissertation, which was the honorable mention finalist for the American Studies Association’s Ralph Henry Gabriel Dissertation Prize. His research has been supported by the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation and the New Jersey Historical Commission.
Dr. Krasovic also serves as the associate director of the Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience at Rutgers-Newark, where he was the 2008-2010 Geraldine R. Dodge Postdoctoral Fellow. At the Institute, he has served as the local Newark coordinator for the federal Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission, a cosponsor of the “This is Newark!” Public Symposium on Urban Design, a facilitator for the New Jersey Council for the Humanities’ statewide film series, and the co-organizer of the Ironbound Environmental Justice History and Resource Center. He also serves on the executive board of the Newark History Society and the steering committee of the Queer Newark Oral History Project.
Visiting Professor of History, Rutgers-Newark
Tom McCabe is a Visiting Professor in the History Department at Rutgers University-Newark. The award-winning teacher and author teaches surveys in U.S. History, History of Newark, and History of Soccer. McCabe received his PhD in American History from Rutgers University in 2006, and his history of St. Benedict’s Preparatory School, an over 140-year-old Catholic prep school in Newark, was published by Fordham University Press in 2010. Miracle on High Street documents the rise, fall and resurrection of one of Newark’s venerable educational institutions, and in the process the book deals with race and religion, class and ethnicity in the American city. Currently, he is working on a history of soccer in the West Hudson (Kearny, Harrison, and Newark).
Want to Learn More?
Basker, James G., ed. American Antislavery Writings: Colonial Beginnings to Emancipation. New York: The Library of America, 2012.
Blight, David W. A Slave No More: Two Men Who Escaped to Freedom, Including Their Own Narratives of Emancipation. New York: Harcourt, 2007.
Brundage, W. Fitzhugh. The Southern Past: A Clash of Race and Memory. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008.
Drescher, Seymour. Abolition: A History of Slavery and Antislavery. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009.
Jeffrey, Julie Roy. Abolitionists Remember: Antislavery Autobiographies and the Unfinished Work of Emancipation. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2008.
Newman, Richard S. The Transformation of American Abolitionism: Fighting Slavery in the Early Republic. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2011.
Reynolds, David S. John Brown, Abolitionist: The Man Who Killed Slavery, Sparked the Civil War, and Seeded Civil Rights. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2005.
Stewart, James Brewer. Abolitionist Politics and the Coming of the Civil War. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2008.
Slavery by Another Name
Blackmon, Douglas A. Slavery by Another Name. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2008.
Daniel, Pete. The Shadow of Slavery: Peonage in the South, 1901–1969. Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 1990.
Lichtenstein, Alex. Twice the Work of Free Labor: The Political Economy of Convict Labor in the New South. London: Verso, 1996.
Mancini, Matthew J. One Dies, Get Another. Columbia: University of South Carolina, 1996.
Oshinsky, David M. Worse than Slavery: Parchman Farm and the Ordeal of Jim Crow Justice. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1997.
The Loving Story
Botham, Fay. Almighty God Created the Races: Christianity, Interracial Marriage, and American Law. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2013.
Branch, Taylor. Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954–63. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1989.
Caro, Robert A. The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol. 3: Master of the Senate. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2003.
Dailey, Jane Elizabeth, Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore, and Bryant Simon. Jumpin’ Jim Crow: Southern Politics from the Civil War to Civil Rights. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.
Hamilton, Daniel W., and Alfred L. Brophy, eds. Transformations in American Legal History: Essays in Honor of Professor Morton J. Horowitz. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2009.
Levine, Ellen. Freedom’s Children: Young Civil Rights Activists Tell Their Own Stories. New York: Putnam, 2000.
Arsenault, Raymond. Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006 (Abridged Edition, 2011).
Etheridge, Eric, Roger Wilkins, and Diane McWhorter. Breach of Peace: Portraits of the 1961 Mississippi Freedom Riders. New York: Atlas & Co., 2008.
Farmer, James. Lay Bare the Heart: An Autobiography of the Civil Rights Movement. Fort Worth: TCU Press, 1998.
Lewis, John. Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Movement. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1998.
Silver, Carol Ruth. Freedom Rider Diary: Smuggled Notes from Parchman Prison. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2014.
General Civil Rights History Websites
Civil Rights Movement Veterans, http://www.crmvet.org/
National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel, http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org/
History Channel, “Civil Rights Movement,” http://www.history.com/topics/civil-rights-movement
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, “Civil Rights Movement,” http://www.jfklibrary.org/JFK/JFK-in-History/Civil-Rights-Movement.aspx
National Park Service, “Historic Places of the Civil Rights Movement,” http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/civilrights
Library of Congress, “The Frederick Douglass Papers,” http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/doughtml/doughome.html
Library of Congress, “The African-American Mosaic,” http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/african/afam005.html
Colonial Williamsburg, http://www.history.org/
Face to Face: Community Conversations is a program of the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, a state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The Council’s theme for 2013, Created Equal: New Jersey, is directly inspired and supported by the NEH’s national Created Equal project. Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle is made possible through a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, as part of its Bridging Cultures initiative, in partnership with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.
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Have questions or comments about the Council’s Face to Face: Community Conversations program? Contact Robert Apgar, Senior Program Officer, at email@example.com or (609) 695-4838.