Ida B Wells Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

Lifting Up Lowery, Vivian and Lewis: Living the Legacy, Freeing the People

By Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — The recent passing of Rev. Joseph Lowery (October 6, 1921 – March 27, 2020), Rev. Cordy Tindell (C.T.) Vivian (July 30, 1924 – July 17, 2020, and Rep. John Lewis (February 21, 1940 – July 17, 2020), three major leaders of the civil rights phase of the Black Freedom Movement, rightfully causes and encourages us to lift them up and to recount and reflect on…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Julianne Malveaux

Ida B’s Pulitzer — Both Too Late and Right on Time

By Dr. Julianne Malveaux

Dr. Julianne Malveaux — Exactly one hundred and thirty-six years to the day after Ida B. Wells was thrown off a Chesapeake and Ohio railroad train, she was awarded a Pulitzer Prize special citation for her “outstanding and courageous reporting on the horrific and vicious violence against African Americans in the era of lynchings.”  The creator of the New York Times’ 1619 Project, Nicole Hannah-Jones, received a Pulitzer on the…

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Ida B. Wells

Ida B. Wells Honored with Posthumous Pulitzer

By News & Current Affairs

By Equal Justice Initiative — The Pulitzer Prizes announced on Monday, May 4, 2020 that a special citation has been awarded to anti-lynching crusader and pioneering journalist Ida B. Wells “[f]or her outstanding and courageous reporting on the horrific and vicious violence against African Americans during the era of lynching.” Ida Bell Wells was born into slavery in Holly Springs, Mississippi, in 1862. At 18, she moved to Memphis to work…

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Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, Ella Baker and Mary Church Terrell

These 19 black women fought for voting rights

By Commentaries/Opinions

Black women like Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, Ella Baker and Mary Church Terrell played a major role in the women’s suffrage movement. By Nsenga K. Burton — August 18, 2020 marks 100 years since the ratification of the 19th Amendment guaranteeing all American women “suffrage,” or the right to vote. The dominant narrative about the women’s suffrage movement is framed through the experiences of white women (and to some extent, abolitionist…

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Mary Turner and the Lynching Rampage of 1918

No More Mary Turners

By Dr. Julianne Malveaux

By Julianne Malveaux — Mary Turner was lynched on May 19. 1918 because she dared raise her voice. Her husband, Hayes Turner, was among 13 people lynched in two weeks in and around Valdosta, Georgia. The lynchings took place because one brutal white man, who was known to abuse workers so severely that he was only able to attract workers by getting them through the convict labor system, beat the…

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Frederick Douglass

Slavery and the Family Tree

By Reparations

By Whitney Stewart, Black Perspectives — How do you make a family tree when you may not know your family history? Beyond the very real physical and emotional toll on enslaved individuals, slavery’s violence also lay in its determination to erase or prevent the creation of family histories. As Frederick Douglass asserted in his 1855 autobiography, “Genealogical trees do not flourish among slaves.” In other words, the constraints of slavery made assembling and representing…

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Ida B. Wells And The Women Pushing Back Today

By Commentaries/Opinions, Video/Audio

Audio by WNYC Studios — Journalist and activist Ida B. Wells is in some ways a forgotten figure, overlooked even in black civil rights history. But her reporting on lynchings across the South was unwavering in its mission: calling America out on racial injustice. And, why black women are no longer willing to play the role of “Magical Negro” in U.S. politics. The United States of Anxiety recently recorded a live…

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Diane Nash, right, represented the Southern Christian Leadership Conference at the White House in 1963.

The Selfless Servant Leadership of the African-American Women of the Civil-Rights Movement

By Editors' Choice

These women didn’t stand on ceremony; they accepted the risks of activism and fought for worlds where others might have freedoms that they themselves would never enjoy. By Janet Dewart Bell — During the civil-rights movement, African Americans led the fight to free this country from the vestiges of slavery and Jim Crow. Though they all too often were—and remain—invisible to the public, African-American women played significant roles at all…

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At the recent Power Rising Summit in Atlanta, U.S. Reps. Stacey Plaskett of the Virgin Islands, Terri Sewell of Alabama, Bonnie Watson Coleman of New Jersey, Robin Kelly of Illinois and Yvette Clarke of New York were among the nearly 1,000 Black women who gathered to strategize on how to build their political power.

A Watershed Year for Black Women’s Political Power in the South

By News & Current Affairs

The recent Power Rising Summit in Atlanta brought together nearly a thousand Black women from across the country to strategize on how to build political power and harness the momentum behind the surge of Black women running for office. By Rebekah Barber, Facing South — From the onset of the women’s suffrage movement, Black women were among the strongest advocates for universal suffrage. Years before Black feminist scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw coined…

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