A collaborative between the Memphis Jewish Community Center, Facing History and Ourselves, and other agencies; Toward Justice: A City-Wide Upstanders' Project is a month long endeavor with various events including:
I Am Your Protector
This powerful storytelling and photography exhibit will be displayed to share diverse stories of people who have been a “protector” of someone who is different than them.
Bob Zellner, Keynote Speaker
Bob is one of the most influential leaders in the Civil Rights Movement, from the 1960s to today. The son and grandson of Ku Klux Klan members, he risked his life- and nearly lost it- many times in the fight to achieve The Second Emancipation. As an organizer of The Freedom Rides of 1961 and the first white southerner to serve as field secretary for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, he worked alongside Martin Luther King Jr., John Lewis, Rosa Parks, and many other civil rights leaders.
Bob captivates audiences with the untold stories of the Civil Rights Movement and his dedication to fighting for the rights of others. Drawing on decades of experience guiding the movement and his ongoing active role, he presents a modern-day message for combating deep-seated racism, discrimination and prejudice, and sparking widespread social change.
Exhibit May 1–31
Carl E. Moore Exhibit
Opening Reception May 3 • 5:30-7:30pm
The work I’ve created over the last few years has dealt with identity and color. During this process my goal was to compare social ideologies about race, stereotypes, and belief systems to everyday colors and the perception of these colors in our environment. As part of my process, Black has always been a color of identity for Black people, Black American, African American, Negro etc. Just as White, for Caucasian or those of Anglo or European descent, Red as a color for Native Americans (Also deemed as inappropriate) and Brown for the Latino population. The color black has always had a negative representation for being compared to death, bad or poor quality and even race. I’ve taken the color black and placed it into the environment, and used it as part of the emotional conversation. The goal is to make the dialogue more about the artwork and the color of the characters, even though the characters are part of the narrative.
Besa: The Promise film screening
BESA: The Promise is the never-before-told story of Albania – a small European country which opened its borders to shelter Jewish refugees, even as it endured a brutal Nazi occupation. It’s witnessed through the prism of two men joined together in a remarkable and unexpected quest: Norman H. Gershman, a renowned Jewish-American photographer determined to record the bravery and compassion of the Albanians; and Rexhep Hoxha, a Muslim-Albanian toy shop owner who sets out to return three precious books to the last surviving member of the Jewish family his father sheltered sixty years before. When these two men meet, an extraordinary and utterly unexpected personal drama is set in motion – one that bridges generations and religions…uniting fathers and sons…Muslims and Jews.
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