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Home > News > Press Releases & Media Advisories > Press Release

UC Irvine's Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium to feature Harvard scholar and author Cornel West

Symposium Topics Address Racial Profiling and the Use of Prison Labor for Capital Gains

Irvine, Calif., January 5, 2001

UC Irvine's Cross-Cultural Center will present the 17th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium Jan. 16 - 18, 2001. The symposium, titled "Represent! Claim the Dream for Yourself!" will feature a keynote address by Harvard scholar, author and orator Cornel West.

"This symposium commemorates and celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. King and his commitment to equity and inclusion of all people," said Anna Gonzalez, director of the UCI Cross-Cultural Center. "It also allows us to examine important race relations issues in today's society, such as racial profiling and social justice."

The symposium will begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, with the showing of the award-winning film "Soledad" in the Social Sciences Lecture Hall followed by a question and answer session with the film's director, Shlomo Buchler. The film tells the story of an explosive encounter between a flamenco dancer and a former slave learning to cope with his freedom.

The symposium continues Wednesday, Jan. 17, at the Cross-Cultural Center with a full day of lectures and workshops, including a panel at 10 a.m. addressing racial and ethnic profiling by police and security personnel, and a lecture at 11:30 a.m. examining the practice of using prison labor for capital gain. West's keynote address, "Social Justice in Today's Multicultural Society," will be held from 7 - 9 p.m. in the Crystal Cove Auditorium, UCI Student Center. A professor of religion and Afro-American studies at Harvard University, West is known as one of the most eloquent participants in the ongoing racial debate. He has authored many groundbreaking books, including "Jews and Blacks: Let the Healing Begin" and the best-selling "Race Matters."

A march and rally will be held Thursday, Jan. 18, with marchers gathering at 11 a.m. at the fountain at University Center and ending at the Student Center for a rally at noon. The symposium's closing ceremony will feature a presentation at 7 p.m. by Joseph L. White, professor emeritus of psychology and psychiatry at UCI and a pioneer in the field of black psychology. The ceremony and a reception will be held in the Crystal Cove Auditorium.

UCI students, faculty and staff and local community members are invited to participate in the free symposium. More than 2,000 people are expected to attend. For more information and a complete schedule of events, call the Cross-Cultural Center at (949) 824-7215.

Cornel West


Lori Brandt
(949) 824-5484


Feb. 2015
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