Williams Celebrates Martin Luther King Jr.

Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: Noelle.Lemoine@williams.edu

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., January 4, 2013—Williams College will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. with two days of events on Sunday, Jan. 13, and Monday, Jan. 14. All are invited to join in these free, public events.

Sunday, January 13:

The film Brave New Voices will be shown at MASS MoCA in North Adams from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. This film documents young people using spoken word to show that the personal is political. Transportation from Williams to MASS MoCA will be provided. The bus will leave from Chapin Hall at 1:30 p.m. Young people in college, middle and high school are highly encouraged to attend.

From 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., a workshop called “Racial Mindfulness” will be held in the O’Connell room in basement of Thompson Chapel. This workshop will explore race and racism through meditation exercises, breathing techniques, and contemplation. A discussion of the historical role of contemplative practice in liberation movements follows.

The Williams Labyrinth will be open between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. The labyrinth is an ancient, non-sectarian devise for walking meditation located in the Fellowship Hall at the First Congregational Church (across the lawn from Paresky Center.)

Camilo Viveiros, a New England activist, will lead a participatory workshop called “From Activism 2 Organizing” in Griffin Hall, room 3, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. This workshop will focus on teaching techniques to mobilize people around social issues.

Monday, January 14:

From 9 a.m. to noon, there will be a social change media project in Baxter Hall in the Paresky Center. The project includes a film screening of Citizen King, which honors King’s inspiring leadership, and a slideshow of activists and scholars of different social movements.

The Williams Labyrinth will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall at the First Congregational Church. At noon, Chaplain Rick Spalding will offer thoughts about using the labyrinth as a way of reflecting on commitment and solidarity, struggle and hope.  The labyrinth will also be open on Tues., January 15.

From 10 a.m. until noon in Paresky’s Baxter Hall, librarian Emery Shriver will be showing texts, images, and videos that highlight King’s 1961 visit to Williams and the history of student activism at Williams and abroad.

Also from 10 a.m. to noon, instructors Earl Dudley and Peter Berek will open their class “Leadership Studies & Social Responsibility” to the public. Guest speaker Hedrick Smith ’55 will discuss whether a new middle class grassroots leadership will emerge to “reclaim the American dream.” This public class lecture will be held in the Thompson Chemistry Lab, room 202.

A gallery discussion featuring selected works of art that commemorate King’s legacy will take place at the Williams College Museum of Art from 1:15 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. The museum, which is normally closed on Mondays, will be open to the public from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

At 3 p.m. in the Henze Lounge at the Paresky Center, a dialogue called “Civil But Disobedient” will take place among the college’s chaplains, Rick Spalding, Bilal Ansari, and Gary Caster. Excerpts from King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” will be included.

A moment of silence will be observed at 4 p.m., followed by the reading of essays written by Williamstown Elementary 5th and 6th graders. A group of Brayton Elementary School 4th graders will recite excerpts from the “I Have a Dream” speech to commemorate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.

At 5:30 p.m at Images Cinema in Williamstown, The Davis Center’s Social Change Film Series will present Broken on All Sides. This documentary aims to answer and provoke questions about the criminal justice system.

All events take place on the Williams campus unless otherwise noted.

The events are co-sponsored by the following Williams departments and offices: Center for Community Engagement, Chaplain’s Office, The Davis Center, Dean of Faculty, Dining Services, Leadership Studies, Meditation Society, Sawyer Library, Williams College Museum of Art, Williams Psychological Counseling Services, and the Zilkha Center, as well as Images Cinema and MASS MoCA.

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For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Communications (413) 597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at www.williams.edu/map

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