Our new discussion series, OurStories Round Tables, is hosting its first event on Friday July 28 from 7-8PM at the Lavender Library on 1414 21st Street. Dr. Paula Austin will lead a discussion on activist, legal scholar, and historian Pauli Murray (1910-1985). Dr. Austin teaches in Sacramento State’s History Department, and specializes in African American History, as well as urban, gender, and social history. She has done programming work with campus departments/centers like the MLK Jr. Center, PRIDE Center, and Women’s Resource Center, like a recent panel discussion on the history of queer women who rebel.
This first discussion will focus on Pauli Murray, who graduated from Howard University’s law school in 1944, was jailed in 1940 after refusing to sit in the back of a bus, and authored numerous books and essays on race, law, and civil rights. She also had a long friendship with Eleanor Roosevelt, along with many of the prominent Civil Rights leaders of the time period. Murray was also “gender nonconforming” and “masculine-of-center” performing, tried to obtain “male hormones” in the 1930s, and had many openly romantic relationships with women. Many have argued that these are some of the reasons Murray’s contributions have been erased from the narrative of the Civil Rights Movement.
While Dr. Austin will give a little context and will share some of what Murray accomplished across her lifetime, we invite attendees to read a little about Murray before the event. Below are a few resources you should check out!
https://www.amazon.com/Jane-Crow-Life-Pauli-Murray/dp/019065645X (the Lavender Library just ordered this book, check on our social media for updates on when it is cataloged and available for check out)
Light snacks and refreshments will be provided. Metered street parking is available, and there are a few spots in the building’s small parking lot. Email the Library for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org