SELINSGROVE — Susquehanna University will celebrate the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a reading of one of the civil rights activist's letters in a multitude of languages later this month.

The third-annual Legacy of MLK - A Day of Teaching will be held Wednesday, Jan. 22 and feature a daylong series of lectures and readings.

Among the events is a multilingual reading by faculty and staff of King's Letter from Birmingham Jail written on April 16, 1963, defending his nonviolent resistance to racism.

"We did the 'I Have a Dream' speech last year and it was the one thing we heard about most," said Rachana Sachdev, an associate professor of English. "People were in tears. It was so meaningful and they asked us to do it again."

Twenty people will recite portions of the letter in various languages, including Bengali, Ukranian, Spanish, Chinese and Sachdev's native tongue, Hindi.

The speech will be projected onto a screen in English and all the other languages so the audience will be able to follow along, Sachdev said.

That event will be held at 4:15 p.m. on Jan. 22 in Stretansky Concert Hall in the Cunningham Center for Music and Art.

The following is a list of topics that will also be open to the public.

At 10 a.m., associate professors of biology Alissa Packer, Peggy Peeler and Tom Peeler, along with assistant professor of biology, Pavithra Vivekanand and Antonio Rockwell, a post-doctoral teaching fellow, will present "Assisted Reproduction -The New Eugenics" in Stretansky Concert Hall.

At the same hour "The Brain and Bias" lecture by Erin Rhinehart, associate professor of biology, will be held in Isaacs Auditorium.

At 11:15 a.m. the "Assisted Reproduction - The New Eugenics" will be repeated in Stretansky Concert Hall.

In the Benjamin Apple Meeting rooms, Stacey Pearson-Wharton, dean of health and wellness, will present "Can't We All Just Get Along: Learning to Talk and Understand Across Disagreement, Difference and Diversity."

At 12:30 p.m., a lecture on "Build Your Soapbox: Student Activism and its Sustainability After King" will be presented in Stretansky Concert Hall by Monica Prince, assistant professor of English and creative writing.

A panel discussion on women of color in the sciences will be held in the Benjamin Apple Meeting rooms with Samya Zain, associate professor of physics; Geneive Henry, professor of chemistry; and Massooma Pirbhai, assistant professor of physics.

At 1:45 p.m., Jeffrey K. Mann, professor of religious studies, will present "Where MLK Surpassed His Namesake" in Stretansky Concert Hall.

"American Creed and the American Dream" will be presented by Harvey Edwards, teacher-in-residence, in Isaacs Auditorium.

 At 3 p.m., the topic "The Music and Legacy of Florence Price, African American Composer," will be presented by visiting assistant professor of music Jordan Randall Smith in Stretansky Concert Hall.

"Not All Neighborhoods are Created Equal: Case Studies of Environmental Racism" will be offered by sustainability coordinator Derek Martin in Isaacs Auditorium. 

At 7 p.m., readings and performances by students from a variety of organizations, including the Slam Poetry Club and Hip-Hop Club, will be presented in Stretansky Concert Hall.

Other events will be held throughout the week.

On Thursday, Jan. 23, alumnus Darrell Willis will give a dramatic reading of King's final speech, "I've Been to the Mountaintop," in Mellon Lounge in the Degenstein Center. The event will be at 11:40 a.m.

An opening reception for Sons, Seeing the Modern African American Male will be at 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, in the Lore Degenstein Gallery.

The portraits in this exhibition explore how the black American male perceives himself and how he is perceived by others. The men pictured in the exhibition were selected from Susquehanna University and throughout the Valley by exhibition curators Harvey Edwards and Dan Olivetti. Photographer Jerry Taliaferro will present the opening reception lecture. The exhibition continues through March 1.

A Hunger Banquet will be held at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 29, in the Benjamin Apple Meeting Rooms. Joanne Troutman, executive director of the Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way, will speak about food insecurity and fighting hunger in central Pennsylvania.




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