Contact: Daphene R. McFerren
March 11, 2014 - The Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University
of Memphis will hold the "Join Hands for Change Gala: The Civil Rights Movement's
Influence on Music, Fashion, and Culture" on April 26 from 7 to 11 p.m. at The Hotel
Memphis, 2625 Thousand Oaks Blvd.
The Hooks Institute's honoree for the evening will be Beverly Robertson, president
of the National Civil Rights Museum. The gala will also celebrate Robertson's dynamic
leadership and vision as she ends her tenure as president of the National Civil Rights
The American Civil Rights Movement successfully challenged formal legal segregation.
It also created a cultural shift transforming American music, fashion and culture.
Folk, blues and gospel singers created harmonies and beats to drum forward the march
for racial equality. Born out of the African-American Church, activists of the 1950s
and 1960s – dressed in formal church attire – boycotted the buses, sat in at segregated
lunch counters, and marched in the streets to demand racial equality.
As the movement for racial equality gained momentum in the mid-1960s, the dress of
white and black activists transformed to reflect the political and social tide for
change. Dashikis, Afros, black leather jackets, berets, blue jeans, loose, flowing
shirts, long hair and flowers all came to symbolize the 1960s, one of the most transformative
periods for human and racial equality in American and world history.
The Join Hands for Change Gala is an edutainment event. Multi-media presentations
will walk guests through the 1960s. Program participants will include Mayors A C Wharton
and Mark Luttrell. Gala attendees are strongly encouraged to join the evening activities
by stylin' their best 1960s look. Eating, dancing and reflections will fill the evening.
This is a ticketed event. For sponsorship or ticket information, contact the Hooks
Institute at 901-678-3974 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Individual tickets are $100 and may also be purchased at www.memphis.edu/benhooks.
Organized in 1996, the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change is an interdisciplinary
center at the University of Memphis. It was founded by the late Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks
and officials at the University. The Hooks Institute archives include Hooks' personal
papers, which are housed in Special Collections.