The Untold Stories of Three Black Women Activists

formationThree biographers of black female activists recently got together at Bowdoin to discuss the commonalities and differences in the historical figures they study.

Jen Scanlon, professor of gender, sexuality, and women’s studies at Bowdoin and the interim dean for academic affairs, is the author of the first biography on Anna Arnold Hedgeman (1899-1990). Sherie Randolph, associate professor of history at Georgia Institute of Technology, is the first biographer of Florynce “Flo” Kennedy (1916-2000), and Jeanne Theoharis, distinguished professor of political science at Brooklyn College, CUNY, is an expert on Rosa Parks (1913-2005).

Their conversation was moderated by Judith Casselberry, associate professor of Africana Studies at Bowdoin College.

The panelists pointed out the discrepancy between how history has treated Parks and how it has treated Hedegman and Kennedy. While Hedgeman and Kennedy are largely unknown, Parks has become an internationally recognized symbol for the civil rights movement. Read more about Hedgeman, Kennedy, and Parks.

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