RACE

Jamil Ragland tutors writing at Capitol Community College in Hartford.
Chion Wolf / WNPR

I was helping a student recently with a paper she was writing. It was on the poem "Ballad of Birmingham," about the 1963 church bombing. 

Evan Lewis of Northampton, Massachusetts, with a photo of his great-grandfather Lent Shaw.
Joyce Skowyra / NEPR

The country's first national memorial to the victims of lynching opens April 27 in Alabama. One of the thousands of victims was Lent Shaw, a successful black farmer in Colbert, Georgia, accused -- many believe falsely -- of assaulting a white woman. 

Editor's note: This story contains content some may find upsetting.

Yawkey Way Name Change Is OK'd

Apr 26, 2018
Yawkey Way street sign on the corner of Van Ness Street in Boston.
Jesse Costa / WBUR

Yawkey Way will again be Jersey Street.

Boston's Public Improvement Commission voted unanimously in favor of the name change on Thursday, removing the name of Tom Yawkey, the longtime former Red Sox owner, from the public street adjacent to Fenway Park.

Editor's note: This report contains language and an image some may find offensive or upsetting.

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice stands high on a hillside overlooking downtown Montgomery, Ala. Beyond the buildings you can see the winding Alabama River and hear the distant whistle of a train — the nexus that made the city a hub for the domestic slave trade.

When you bring up teacher diversity at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School, the students will be the first to tell you things could be better. Senior Lorra Marseille says she can only think of two teachers of color off the top of her head.

“I’ve had Mr. Dua,” said Marseille. “And then this semester I had Ms. Campbell.”

Schoolwide, the actual number is closer to 40 out of roughly 150.

I met Marseille after school one day. She was one of about 20 kids hanging out in history and psychology teacher Kevin Dua’s room.

One of Sonya Clark's previous flag unraveling performances.
Taylor Dabney / Courtesy of Sonya Clark

A performance artist at Amherst College on Thursday uses the threads of a confederate flag to draw attention to the United States' history of racism.

Fifty years ago in Memphis, on April 3, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his final speech. The next day, King was assassinated.

On the 50th anniversary of his death, new biographies reveal facets of his life.

One depicts his relationship with Robert F. Kennedy as more strained than previously reported. Another explains why King chose to attend Boston University.

A student at the Ralph C. Mahar Regional School in Orange, Massachusetts, reads the names of 17 victims in last month's school shooting in Parkland, Florida. A chime was sounded after each name.
Jill Kaufman / NEPR

A big story this week was the student walkouts across the region and the country, on the one-month anniversary of the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

The former Clinton AME Zion Church in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

Preservationists for a 130-year-old black church with ties to civil rights pioneer W.E.B. Du Bois have received federal grant money to turn it into a community center. 

The main entrance at Westfield State University, where last semester almost two dozen incidents of bigotry were reported.
Jill Kaufman / NEPR

It seems every few weeks there is a hate crime reported on a college campus in New England. The groups that keep track of these kinds of incidents say there is, in fact, a marked increase in the number of racist slurs found scrawled on campus walls and an increase in white supremacist group activity.

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