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Authors –and their works – speak to ASALH mission


Toussaint Louverture, Nathaniel Turner, Sengbe Pieh, Sojourner Truth, Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Tubman are familiar iconic symbols of heroism whose struggle in the United States, Africa and the Caribbean helped to change the status quo of their day: racism and slavery.

Celeste-Marie Bernier, the Dorothy K. Hohenberg Chair of Excellence in Art History at the University of Memphis, traces the lives and histories of these six men and women in her book, “Characters of Blood: Black Heroism in the Transatlantic Imagination.”

  • Written by Wiley Henry
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What’s up with Memphis youth?


Another weekend with a frightfully dangerous incident powered by unruly youths has area residents amping up the call for a crackdown on the perpetrators of such law-breaking behavior.

A 46-year-old mother and her 9-year-old daughter were swept up in an eruption of out-of-control youths following a football game at Central High School last Friday night (Sept. 26th). Sharon Mourning and her daughter were trapped in their car as dozens of youths jumped on, kicked and stomped the vehicle.

  • Written by Tony Jones
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Freedom Award honorees – a trio of barrier breakers who advanced freedom


“Breaking Barriers, Advancing Freedom” will be the theme that links Charlayne Hunter-Gault, Robert (Bob) Parris Moses and Frank E. Robinson on Dec. 2nd and forever link them to Memphis and the National Civil Rights Museum.

With Beverly Robertson, the museum’s high-energy (and retiring) president doing the honor, the three were announced as the 2014 Freedom Award honorees on Tuesday. This year’s presentation will be Dec. 2nd at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts, with the traditional Gala Dinner later at the Memphis Cook Convention Center.

Are ‘dysfunctional relationships media invention or state of crisis?


There are a plethora of books, online sources and more seeking to provide relationship insight and assistance. Pennsylvania certified psychologist, school principal and author Dr. Umar Johnson made an effort to be another resource last week (Sept. 18th).

The University of Memphis chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists and the Student Event Allocation Committee sponsored an event titled “Dysfunctional Relationships: Media Invention or State of Crisis.” Johnson spoke on the topic, “Black Male-Female Relationships: The Clash of Pain Bodies,” discussing such subtopics as reasons for failure.

From homelessness to leadership: “People’s mayor’ to share her story

Peoples Mayor

Dr. Evelyn Wynn-Dixon will make her first trip to Memphis this week to share her story of persevering through poverty and homelessness to become the mayor of Riverdale, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta.

She will serve as the keynote speaker at The RISE Foundation’s second annual gala, An Evening of Change, which be held Saturday (Sept. 27th) beginning at 7 p.m. at the Hilton Memphis.

Memphian transforms Mondays from mundane to ‘Melodic’


Monday is a word that few love to hear. It signals the beginning of another week of work or studies; more “we-time” and less “me-time;” more stress and more mess… for most of us. However, a local Memphis poet, author, and musician is seeking (and successfully so) to transform our usual outlook on Mondays into anything but bleak. Her name is Shana Jay.

Drawing upon her inner-creativity, Shana began writing at the age of seven. She discovered great comfort and joy in the process after she began to keep a journal of her emotional-thoughts following her mother’s divorce.

African-American residents join movement out of Memphis


Numbers from the last four decennial censuses depict the major demographic changes that have been occurring in Memphis and the surrounding area.

The outward movement of white residents has drawn major attention over the decades. However, little attention has been given to numbers that show that in the last decade in particular a significant number of African-American residents have joined the outward movement.

Hopson dials up positives from protest of cell phone ban


Shelby County Schools Supt. Dorsey E. Hopson II says all sides involved in a volatile protest Tuesday (Sept. 23) at Oakhaven High School may have made a significant point.

The hot button issue exploded into public concern as The New Tri State Defender’s media partner, WMC-TV5, showed hundreds of angered students and parents displaying signs and angrily voicing their concerns over Oakhaven principal Dr. Melanie Black’s decision to confiscate students’ cell phones.

  • Written by Tony Jones
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