Joan C. Browning
Joan C. Browning

Civil rights activist to discuss Freedom Riders

By Alexandria Sanchez
Student Writer, College of Liberal and Fine Arts

(March 28, 2007)--As part of Women's History Month, the UTSA Women's Studies Institute will host a lecture by civil rights activist Joan C. Browning speaking on "A Hell of a Disturbance: White Woman Albany Freedom Rider" at 2 p.m., Thursday, March 29 in the University Center Retama Auditorium (2.02.02) on the 1604 Campus.

Browning was one of the first white students to participate in the 1960s civil rights movement in her native Georgia. A veteran of the most important civil rights group of the era, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, she was jailed in December 1961 for her participation in a campaign to desegregate the train station in rural Albany, Ga.

Drawing on letters and notes she wrote while jailed, her lecture explores how Browning, as a 19-year-old white woman, saw and experienced race and gender in 1961. The lecture title comes from a letter in which she wrote, "I just heard that I caused a hell of a disturbance. It seems that never in their experiences has a white girl -- especially such a quiet, soft-spoken, all-American type -- been involved."

For more information, contact Gregg Michel at (210) 458-5701.

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