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Salman Rushdie to speak at Duke

Author Salman Rushdie, whose "Satanic Verses" book prompted death threats decades ago, will speak next month at Duke University.

Rushdie's public lecture will be Tuesday, April 12 at 6 p.m. in Duke University's Page Auditorium. A brief question-and-answer period will follow.

(Associated Press photo)

The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Tickets can be picked up on a first-come, first-served basis at the University Box Office in the Bryan Center starting March 15 for Duke students, faculty and staff, and March 16 for the general public. Tickets are limited to two per person.

Rushdie is the author of 10 novels, including “Midnight’s Children,” winner of the Booker Prize in 1981, “The Satanic Verses” and most recently “Luka and the Fire of Life.” A fellow of the British Royal Society of Literature, Rushdie has received, among other awards, the Whitbread Prize for Best Novel (twice), the Writers’ Guild Award, the James Tait Black Prize, the European Union’s Aristeion Prize for Literature, and author of the year prizes in both Britain and Germany.

He is perhaps best known for the 1989 publication of "The Satanic Versus," which enraged Muslims who believed it mocked their faith and led Iran's Ayatollah Khomenei to issue a fatwa urging his assassination. 

He went into hiding for nine years and still receives the occasional death threat, he told a British newspaper last year.

These days, Rushdie holds the rank of commander in the Order of Arts and Letters -- France’s highest artistic honor. Between 2004 and 2006, he served as president of PEN American Center, and continues to work as president of the PEN World Voices International Literary Festival, which he helped to create.

“Salman Rushdie is without question one of the greatest writers of the 20th and 21st centuries,” said Ian Baucom, director of the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute, an event co-sponsor. “I'm delighted we have the opportunity to host him and hear this lecture. It promises to be a remarkable event.”

Paid parking for the lecture will be available in the Bryan Center garage.
 

Duke to hold conference on race

A Duke Law School conference this month will examine issues at the heart of public discourse on race in America.

The conference, April 8-10,  is called “From Slavery to Freedom to the White House: Race in 21st-Century America, a Conference in Honor of John Hope Franklin." It is free and open to the public.

All discussions will be in Room 4047 of Duke Law School, located at the corner of Science Drive and Towerview Road on Duke’s West Campus. Parking is available at the Bryan Center.

Conference participants come from a range of disciplines such as law, history, social psychology, economics, political science and the humanities. The full Thursday-Saturday conference schedule and list of participants is online at www.law.duke.edu/lrp/conference/agenda.

In a series of roundtable discussions, they will examine such issues as the role that race plays in politics and the significance of the Obama presidency; the future of voting rights, civil rights and racial justice; the causes and implications of interracial disparities in wealth; how social psychology can inform our understanding of societal disparities; and how immigration factors into many of these issues.

“Our goal is to identify questions about the future of race or racial inequality that merit examination but are not currently being addressed or are given insufficient attention in scholarly and public discourse,” said Duke Law professor Guy-Uriel Charles, co-director of Duke’s Center on Law, Race and Politics, in a Duke news release. “For example, to what extent is race something other than a site of grievance? To what extent is it simply a negative, victim-centered framework and to what extent ought it be a more positive, empowering framework?  Should -- can -- we reframe the stories we tell about race?”

Journalists Brent Staples and Ray Suarez and Harvard sociologist Orlando Patterson will offer keynote remarks at the event.

The conference honors John Hope Franklin’s life and work, which were devoted to understanding the impact of racism on American life. (Franklin taught at Duke Law School late in his career.)

What to Watch on Sunday: True Blood gets freaky deaky

Biographical Conversations with John Hope Franklin (6pm, UNC-TV) - The first in a series of programs airing on Sunday nights at 6pm featuring Franklin's reflections of growing up in the racially-divided South, and his life as a renowned scholar and historian.

Next Food Network Star (9pm, Food) - Emeril Lagasse greets the three remaining finalists at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, where they film promos for their potential new food shows and cater a VIP party screening the movie "Julie & Julia." 

True Blood (9pm, HBO) -  Things are definitely starting to intensify on "True Blood." Sookie and Bill are still in Dallas on their mission for Eric. Bill encounters someone from his past, while Sookie and Hugo run into problems looking for Godric. Sam gets deeper into his relationship with Daphne, and things get extra freaky deaky at Maryann's latest party.

The Storm (9pm, NBC) - Cheer up, America! It's another Sunday Night Disaster Movie! This one stars Treat Williams as an evil tycoon obsessed with weather-changing technology. When one of his experiments goes horribly wrong, only James Van Der Beek can save the planet. John Larroquette also stars. This is a two-parter.

In Tulsa, a park for John Hope Franklin

In Durham this week, academia paid tribute to John Hope Franklin, the black history scholar who died in March.

Much was made Thursday during a two-hour ceremony at Duke Chapel about Franklin's roots - he grew up in Oklahoma - and his decision later in life to settle in Durham and work at Duke.

While Duke and Durham happily claim the legendary scholar, so too does Tulsa, where he grew up.

There, a park is being named for him.

 

June 11, 2009: John Hope Franklin's life honored

Former President Bill Clinton Clinton was the last of a dozen speakers to share memories of John Hope Franklin and his wife, Aurelia. The ... more

John Hope and Aurelia Franklin: "Extraordinary people."

Some of the most touching sentiments from today's ceremony at Duke Chapel honoring historian John Hope Franklin and his wife, Aurelia, came from their son, John Whittington Franklin.

The event was a celebration of the lives of John Hope, who died in March, and Aurelia, who died in 1999. John Hope - I'll continue referring to him that way because that's how he was generally referred to - was a scholar of legend; his seminar work, "From Slavery to Freedom," went a long way towards defining the black experience and created a roadmap for African-American education in this country. Its ninth edition is about to be published.

 In hearing John Whittington Franklin talk about his parents, it became clear that education, truth and scholarship were at the core of the Franklin household. John Whittington Franklin recalled how his mother taught him to cook while his father took him fishing, and both parents got on him about grammar and his mathematics.

"Conversation was an art," Franklin recalled. "And one needed to be well-versed on currrent events and willing to provide an opinion."

A couple of tidbits I'm cribbing directly from the program for today's celebration:

The couple met at Fisk University in Tennessee in 1931. Aurelia met John Hope through introductions from a classmate. 

"He was headed for town and asked if Aurelia needed anything. She asked for 15 cents worth of chocolate-covered peanuts. Although he was working two jobs, he did not have any money. Aurelia gave him the coins and he brought her the peanuts."

 Nice.

They were married June 11, 1940 - today would be their 69th anniversary - and the ceremony was held in her parents' living room at 7:30 in the morning. 

The Franklins traveled the world - Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Southeast Asia, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and all over Africa. For their 50th anniversary, they vacationed in Rio de Janeiro.

Said John Whittington Franklin Thursday: "John Hope and Aurelia were extraordinary people, a marvelous couple and a powerful team."

Duke to live-stream John Hope Franklin ceremony

Duke is live-streaming today's celebration of the life of John Hope Franklin. Click here to watch the event.

It begins at 11 a.m. at Duke Chapel. Former President Bill Clinton is scheduled to speak.

UNC-NC to air John Hope Franklin tribute live

UNC-NC will air Duke University's “A Celebration of the Lives of John Hope and Aurelia Whittington Franklin” Thursday morning live at 11am.

Former President Bill Clinton is scheduled to speak. Clinton awarded Franklin the Medal of Freedom in 1995, and appointed him to chair a national task force on race in 1997.

Franklin passed away in March at the age of 94.

Civil rights leader Vernon Jordan, Duke trustee emerita Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, and Duke President Richard H. Brodhead will also speak.

UNC-NC is UNC-TV's digital channel. It's located on channel 204 if you have cable. Duke University will also provide a live webstream of the events.

A messy Thursday expected at Duke

Thursday is going to be messy at Duke.

At Duke Chapel, the university is hosting a celebration of the life of John Hope Franklin, the  civil rights pioneer and scholar, and his wife Aurelia Whittington Franklin.

That's at 11 a.m. and is expected to be a well-attended event, what with former President Bill Clinton heading the list of notables planning to attend.

Across campus, there will be three public high school graduations throughout the day at Cameron Indoor Stadium, adding to what will surely be a big old traffic congestion nightmare.

Hillside high holds graduation at 8 a.m. Northern high is at noon, and Durham School of the Arts is at 4 p.m.

Duke officials say heavy traffic is expected and parking on campus will be limited. Visitors are urged to use Duke's bus system.
Parking for the high school graduations will be available in the Blue Zone parking lot on Duke University Road and the Whitford Lot on Whitford Drive. Participants, guests and Blue Zone permit holders can enter the lot at the Iron Gate on Duke University Road. The Whitford Drive lot will be open for Duke permit holders, special guests and handicapped parking.

Folks attending the John Hope Franklin celebration at Duke Chapel should park either in the Bryan Center parking garage or in lots along Duke University Road near Chapel Drive, where shuttles will bring them to campus.

Or, you may just want to walk from wherever you're coming from. It may be quicker.

A messy Thursday at Duke

Thursday is going to be messy at Duke.

At Duke Chapel, the university is hosting a celebration of the life of John Hope Franklin, the  civil rights pioneer and scholar, and his wife Aurelia Whittington Franklin.

That's at 11 a.m. and is expected to be a popular event, what with former President Bill Clinton heading the list of notables planning to attend.

Across campus, there will be three public high school graduations throughout the day at Cameron Indoor Stadium, adding to what will surely be a big old traffic congestion nightmare.

Hillside high holds graduation at 8 a.m. Northern high is at noon, and Durham School of the Arts is at 4 p.m.

Duke officials say heavy traffic is expected and parking on campus will be limited. Visitors are urged to use Duke's bus system.
Parking for the high school graduations will be available in the Blue Zone parking lot on Duke University Road and the Whitford Lot on Whitford Drive. Participants, guests and Blue Zone permit holders can enter the lot at the Iron Gate on Duke University Road. The Whitford Drive lot will be open for Duke permit holders, special guests and handicapped parking.

Folks attending the John Hope Franklin celebration at Duke Chapel should park either in the Bryan Center parking garage or in lots along Duke University Road near Chapel Drive, where shuttles will bring them to campus.

Or, you may just want to walk from wherever you're coming from. It may be quicker.

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