Pulp

Pulp Tree

Jet - March 16 issue

Page 14 Black History
March 11th 1959: Lorraine Hansberry was the first Black woman to premiere her play, A Raisin in the Sun, on Broadway.
March 15 1999: Maurice Ashley was the first Black man to attain the coveted chess rank of "Grand Master".

Page 26 Where Are Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr.?
The lead singers of the group 5th Dimension have made an album to celebrate 40 years of marraige entitled The Many Faces of Love.

Check out a recent Black History publication:
The African American experience : black history and culture through speeches, letters, editorials, poems, songs, and stories

Underground Railroad Display

Enjoy colorful creations by Judy Schmidt of Ann Arbor Storyteller’s Guild fame who incorporated the Monkey Wrench, Flying Geese, Bear Paw and other designs into her beautiful quilts. Stop by the glass case in the Downtown Youth Department to see books about the Underground Railroad and the much discussed Quilt Code and then check out Karen Simpson's lovely quilts on the far wall of the Youth Department. Maybe they will inspire you to color a quilt design of your own and hang it beside hers!

Happy Birthday Alice Walker!

alice walkeralice walker

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite writers, Alice Walker. Born February 9, 1944, she is best known as the author of The Color Purple, which won her a Pulitzer Prize. A self-proclaimed "womanist", she is politically active in several different areas that often surface in her work: civil rights, the anti-nuclear movement, the environment, the women’s movement, and the movement to protect indigenous peoples. Her fight to end female circumcision in Africa is discussed in Warrior Marks : Female Genital Mutilation and the Sexual Blinding of Women, as well two of her fictional works The Temple of My Familiar and Possessing the Secret of Joy. Walker was the editor of I love myself when I am laughing ... and then again when I am looking mean and impressive : a Zora Neale Hurston reader and was instrumental in bringing Hurston's work back into print. She has published an impressive amount of her own work as well, including novels, short story collections, poetry, children's books, essays, and autobiographical reflections. Click here to watch Alice Walker share a poem she wrote to mark the inauguration of Barack Obama, and to see her speak with legendary 93-year-old civil rights activist and philosopher Grace Lee Boggs.

The Best of Everything By Kimerla Lawson Roby

The Best of Everything written by Kimberla Roby Lawson is the next installment in the Curtis Black series. The Best of Everything is about Curtis Black's daughter, Alicia.

Alicia has now graduated from college and is married to Phillip Sullivan, her father’s new associate minister. Alicia has always had the best of everything, thanks to her father, but now that she is married, she can no longer expect or rely on her father to support her financially. Alicia is fully aware that her husband cannot provide for her the same way her father has, yet she continues to shop. Her husband slowly becomes aware of her shopping habits. He makes it clear to her that her spending is out of control and he tries to set limits on her, but being the selfish and deceitful person that Alicia is, she continues to rack up debt—not only in her name, but Phillip’s name as well. Needless to say her spending causes turmoil in the marriage, but Alicia seems unable to stop shopping.

Happy Birthday Langston Hughes!

hugheshughes

Langston Hughes was born in Joplin, Missouri on February 1, 1902. He traveled all over the world - to Europe, Africa, Mexico, the USSR - but his heart and home were in Harlem, where he was one of the most versatile writers of the artistic movement known as the Harlem Renaissance. Known primarily as a poet, Hughes also wrote plays, essays, novels, short stories, and books for children. Check out the AADL's large collection of Langston Hughes materials and enjoy his rich, vibrant portrayal of black American culture.

With his ebony hands on each ivory key
He made that poor piano moan with melody.
O Blues!
Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool
He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool.
Sweet Blues!
Coming from a black man's soul.
O Blues!
- from "The Weary Blues", Langston Hughes, 1926

Motown turns 50!

Motown 50Motown 50

On January 12, 2009, Motown Records turned 50. It was 50 years ago to the day that Barry Gordy launched the world renowned record label home to such legendary acts as, the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight and the Pips, and the Jackson 5, to name just a few! The label still exists and is celebrating the 50 year mark with the Motown 50 Podcast series where you can hear for free a number of their well-known artists. A wonderful documentary about a bit of Motown history is the DVD, Standing in the Shadows of Motown, the story of the Funk Brothers, the group of musicians that played on every single hit Motown record from the label's beginnings to 1972. If you are interested in seeing where Motown's roots began, visit the Motown Historical Museum in Detroit. Enjoy Motown by listening to a CD, reading a bit of its history, watching some of the artists, and visiting where it all began!

Happy Birthday Mary J. Blige!

maryjbligemaryjblige

Celebrate the birthday of R&B legend Mary J. Blige by checking out some of her music from the AADL collection. Try her latest release Growing Pains, currently nominated for a Grammy Award for "Best Contemporary R&B Album". Reflections is Blige's 2006 compilation where you can find many of her greatest hits. The Breakthrough features one of Blige's most popular singles "Be Without You". The success of The Breakthrough won Blige nine Billboard Music Awards, two American Music Awards, two BET Awards, two NAACP Image Awards, and a Soul Train Award. She also received eight Grammy Award nominations at the 2007 Grammy Awards, the most of any artist that year. Blige won three: "Best Female R&B Vocal Performance", "Best R&B Song" (both for "Be Without You"), and "Best R&B Album" for The Breakthrough. Along with many other personal releases, Mary J. Blige has collaborated with numerous other artists including Ray Charles, Missy Elliott, and Aretha Franklin. Outside of her music career, Mary J. Blige is the founder of the Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now, Inc. (FFAWN).

Thomas A. La Veist will speak at the University of Michigan

Thomas A. La VeistThomas A. La Veist

Research Scientist, Author and Public Speaker Thomas A. La Veist will be in Ann Arbor at the University of Michigan School of Public Health on Tuesday, November 18th 3:30 - 5:00 pm. The event is sponsored by the Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture, and Health and co sponsored by the Program for Research on Black Americans and the MICHR(Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research)/Health Disparities Research Program at the University of Michigan. Mr. La Veist will be speaking on Disentangling Race and Socioeconomic Status: Advancing Understanding of Race Disparities in Health.

October 14, 1964 - Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Have you ever wondered about the Nobel Prizes? We all know them as a mark of prestige, but where did those world-famous awards come from and who decides the winners? Check out The Nobel Prize : A History of Genius, Controversy, and Prestige and wonder no more. Burton Feldman relates the lively history of the awards, touring their century-long existence forward from the will of dynamite mogul Alfred Nobel. Readers will learn about the quirky preferences of the award committees, winners who really didn't deserve to win, losers that should have been winners, and amusing bits of Nobel trivia (like the awarding of the prize in medicine to the inventor of the lobotomy). For details on Martin Luther King, Jr. and his award, the AADL has a GIANT collection of MLK materials for you to peruse. Enjoy!

August 11th - Happy Birthday Alex Haley!

Alex Haley, AuthorAlex Haley, Author

Alexander Murray Palmer Haley was born on August 11, 1921 in Ithaca, New York. As a young boy, Alex Haley learned of his African ancestor, Kunta Kinte, by listening to the family stories of his maternal grandparents while spending his summers in Henning, Tennessee. According to family history, Kunta Kinte landed with other Gambian Africans in "Naplis" (Annapolis, Maryland) where he was sold into slavery. Alex Haley's quest to learn more about his family history resulted in his writing the Pulitzer Prize winning book Roots. The book has been published in 37 languages, and was made into the first week-long television mini-series, viewed by an estimated 130 million people. Roots also generated widespread interest in genealogy and eventually helped spawn the Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Foundation.
Other Haley publications include many well received Playboy interviews (including Martin Luther King, Jr.), his first major book, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, A Different Kind of Christmas, a 1990 book about the underground railroad, and Queen, the story of Haley's paternal ancestors. Perhaps one of Alex Haley's greatest gifts was in speaking. He was a fascinating teller of tales. In great demand as a lecturer, both nationally and internationally, he was on a lecture tour in Seattle, Washington when he suffered a heart attack and died in February 1992.

Syndicate content