sealPurdue News

January 24, 2003

Lecture to explore slavery from unique perspective

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The author of several children's books, including "No More! Stories and Songs of Slave Resistance," will speak at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, in Purdue University's Black Cultural Center.

Doreen Rappaport emphasizes stories of empowerment through multicultural storytelling and historical nonfiction. Other children's books by Rappaport include, "Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr." and "Freedom River." Both books received ALA Notable Book 2000 and  Coretta Scott King Honor Book 2000 awards.

Rappaport says her anthology, "No More! Stories and Songs of Slave Resistance," redefines slavery by showing it as a catalyst for defiance and resistance.

"As a child, from my father I learned about and treasured the 'Negro' spirituals, as they were called in those days," Rappaport says. "I valued them as unique music created by enslaved Africans and as a defiant way of unifying slaves and protecting them from the oppressive white world. Thinking about using the music in 'No More!' led me to read autobiographies, letters, interviews and poems written by black Americans. Gradually the shape of the book emerged as an interweaving of many different voices."

Prior to becoming an author, Rappaport developed educational programs and taught music and reading in elementary and junior high schools in New York City and New Rochelle, N.Y.

Rappaport's lecture is sponsored by the BCC and Teachers Encouraging a Love for Literature.

CONTACT: Renee Thomas, Black Cultural Center director, (765) 494-3091,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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