On Sunday, Angela Davis, one of the most famous radical leftwing activists of the 1970s speaks at Christ Church Cathedral, capping Black History Month and providing a lead-in to Women's History Month.(full story at stltoday.com)
Whether or not you agree with all or any of the positions Davis has taken over the years (now she is usually associated with her work against prisons and social problems associated with incarceration), this is a free opportunity to hear a true witness and participant in a dramatic time in U.S. history.
Read more of Newsweek's story of her arrest and her current bio as professor emerita at the University of California-Santa Cruz. Davis was acquitted after a global uproar over her imprisonment as the owner of a gun used in the Aug. 7, 1970 courtroom abduction and subsequent murder of Marin County Superior Court Judge Harold Haley by three San Quentin inmates.
Her name was evoked in songs, including the Rolling Stones' "Sweet Black Angel" and John Lennon and Yoko Ono's "Angela." James Baldwin wrote her an open letter of support, saying, "The enormous revolution in black consciousness which has occurred in your generation, my dear sister, means the beginning or the end of America." Most recently, she's turned up on YouTube speaking at Occupy Wall Street.
When Angela Davis was arrested four decades ago, it made the cover of Newsweek. Here's how the story began:"She was, by the FBI's reckoning, the most-wanted woman in America -- a young revolutionary of rare intellect and beauty accused of an accomplice's role in one of the year's most shocking incidents of left-wing terrorism. There was more to Angela Davis than that.
At 26, she was a breath of new life in the doddering American Communist Party, an eloquent champion of the Black Panthers, an academic cause celebre in California and an icon to New Left activists from coast to coast. Last week, in an episode that mingled irony with intrigue, G-men arrested her without a fight in that quintessentially Middle American refuge-a Howard Johnson's motel."
Iconic O-Surrogate Takes St. Louis
Angela Davis Months at halftime