Chestertown, MD, January 17, 2002 — In celebration of Black History Month, the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, the Center for the Study of Black Culture, and the Black Student Union of Washington College present "FREEDOM, FAITH, AND TERROR: THOUGHTS ON THE DAWNING AGE," a talk by Taylor Branch, Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on Tuesday, February 12, 2002, at 8 p.m. in the College's Norman James Theatre, William Smith Hall. The event is free and the public is invited to attend.Branch's talk will focus on reinterpreting the legacy of Martin Luther King in the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and how the ideals of the Civil Rights Movement can be carried on amidst concerns for national security and public safety. Branch is the award-winning writer of a multi-volume history of the Civil Rights Movement and the work of Martin Luther King, Jr.: "Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954-63" and "Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-5." These exhaustive treatments of the early history, personalities and politics of the Civil Rights Movement—representing 13 years of writing and research—have established Branch as a national authority, and he frequently advised President Clinton on racial matters and civil rights issues during his terms. Currently Branch is working on the third and final installment in this history, titled At Canaan's Edge.
The C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience at Washington College opened in Fall 2001 to encourage the broad study of American history and culture and the ways we give daily new meaning to what George Washington called "the great experiment." In keeping with the special history and character of Washington College, the Center focuses on the nation's founding moment, ideals and experiences by highlighting contemporary scholarship and research in these areas.