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University of Dayton Magazine
Created Equal

Created equal

10:45 AM  Mar 7th, 2014
by Natalie Kimmel '13

A recent grant helped UD Libraries celebrate Black History Month through film and feedback.

Thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, as part of its Bridging Cultures initiative in partnership with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, UD was one of 473 institutions selected for this opportunity. The University was awarded four documentaries, including The Abolitionists, Slavery by Another Name, Freedom Riders and The Loving Story.

Along with UD ArtStreet and the Rosewood Arts Center in Kettering, UD Libraries presented the film series, “Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle,” featuring films chronicling the history of civil rights in America, and facilitated discussions on the films’ subject matter. All events were free and open to the public.

“As a Marianist institution, one of the things we talk about is recognizing the signs of the times. Since this is a grant series focused on films that look at civil rights history and how people dealt with the signs of their times, I thought it would be an interesting way for us to look at where we’ve been and what challenges we face now,” said Ione Damasco, project coordinator and cataloger librarian.

As communities gathered together to explore the past, present and future of civil rights and social justice, these film screenings closely coincided with UD’s theme for Black History Month: Looking back to move forward.

“The discussion about Slavery by Another Name was very impactful,” said Mansour Al Rabh. “The people who came were really interested in the issues that were brought up in the film and they were willing to ask the hard questions and engage in the story.”

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