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Spencer Cave Evening Lecture with Dr. Arnold Rampersad

National Archives at Kansas City
Kansas City, MO

Monday, February 25, 2019 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.


On Monday, February 25 at 7:00 p.m., the National Archives in partnership with Park University, will host Dr. Arnold Rampersad who will discuss Jackie Robinson, American. This program will take place at the GEM Theater, 1615 East 18th Street, Kansas City, MO. Reservations are requested for this free program.

In recognition of Jackie Robinson’s 100th birthday in 2019 (January 31), Rampersad, will present a discussion on the life and legacy of Robinson as part of Park University’s 18th annual Spencer Cave Black History Month Lecture. Rampersad’s lecture, Jackie Robinson, American, will probe the ways in which Robinson’s story is a truly American story, one that reflects both the highs and lows, and the tragedies and triumphs, of U.S. history and culture. It will also illustrate the capacity of the individual American, as exemplified by Robinson, to change the nation in the direction of justice, honor and individual success.

Robinson was the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball when he started for the Brooklyn Dodgers at first base in April 1947. Robinson played one season with the Kansas City Monarchs in 1945 in the Negro American League.

Rampersad authored Jackie Robinson: A Biography after being selected by Robinson’s widow, Rachel, to tell her husband’s story. Among his other books include Days of Grace: A Memoir, co-authored by late tennis star and activist Arthur Ashe, and books on W.E.B. Du Bois, Ralph Ellison, and Langston Hughes. A winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award in biography and autobiography in 1986, Rampersad was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in biography in 1989, and for the National Book Award in non-fiction prose in 2007. In 2011, President Barack Obama awarded Rampersad the National Humanities Medal, an award that honors individuals or groups whose work has deepened the nation’s understanding of the humanities and broadened citizens’ engagement with history, literature, languages, philosophy and other humanities subjects. Rampersad earned a doctorate in English and American literature from Harvard University, and both a Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts in English from Bowling Green State University. He is the Sara Hart Kimball Professor in the Humanities, Emeritus, at Stanford University.

Park University’s Spencer Cave Black History Month Lecture Series is named for Cave, a man born into slavery at the start of the Civil War. After moving to Parkville, Missouri, Cave worked for the University for more than 70 years before his death in 1947. In homage to Cave, Park University started this lecture series to expound on the many contributions African-Americans have made toward our nation’s success. This program is supported by a grant from the Missouri Humanities Council and offered in partnership with the Greater Kansas City Black History Study Group, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, and Park University.




Image courtesy of Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

All events listed in the calendar are free unless noted.