For more than 25 years, Valparaiso University and the surrounding community have gathered to celebrate, commemorate, and encourage the continuance of the work began by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Instead of taking the day off and contemplating in isolation our call, we choose to gather as a community to collectively reflect on the legacy of Rev. King and the work still left for us to do. Through targeted discussions, focus sessions, and compelling convocation, we allow Rev. King’s prophetic work to give life and guidance to fulfilling the dream today.

Our Theme: What Everybody Ought to Know

The modern Civil Rights Movement brought the legal edifice of Jim Crow-style segregation crumbling down. But in the eyes of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other movement leaders, the work was far from done. The great evils of racism, poverty, and war continued to wreak havoc here in the United States and across the globe–and more than fifty years later, they still do. Join us for this 30th Valparaiso University MLK Day Celebration on Monday, January 21, 2019, as together we tackle the question gleaned from the old Sunday school and Civil Rights song: if we want justice to roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream, then are there things that everybody ought to know?

Our Speaker: Eddie S. Glaude Jr., PhD

As we dialogue throughout the day on the theme: “What Everybody Ought to Know,” we are excited to host Eddie S. Glaude Jr., PhD, the James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor and Chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University.

A scholar who speaks to the “black and blue in America,” his most well-known books, Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul, and In a Shade of Blue: Pragmatism and the Politics of Black America, take a wide look at black communities and reveal complexities, vulnerabilities, and opportunities for hope. Hope that is, in one of his favorite quotes from W.E.B Du Bois, “not hopeless, but a bit unhopeful.” He is a columnist for Time Magazine and regularly provides commentary on radio and television news programs like Democracy Now!, Morning Joe, and the 11th Hour.

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