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Dr. Ann-Marie Adams to Speak at Otis Library

NORWICH — Historian Dr. Ann-Marie Adams will present a Women’s History talk at Otis Library on March 10.

The event will include presentation distilled from her dissertation while at Howard University. Her dissertation, Sheff v. O’Neill: The Troubled Legacy of  School Segregation in Connecticut, was published in 2010 and is the first serious scholarship that examines the full arc of the socio-political history of blacks in Connecticut from the colonial period to the twentieth century.

The program, “Sarah Harris: Courage and Commitment in the Quest for ‘a little more’ Education” will begin at 6 p.m.

Her talk on Thursday will also detail Prudence Crandall and her students’ fight against the prevailing racist sentiment of antebellum Connecticut after she opened the first school for black women in 1833.  Crandall’s courage is heralded across the nation and inspired a museum in Canterbury, Conn.  But the courageous act of Sarah Harris, her first black student, is rarely examined, or heralded in public, Adams said.  In her presentation, the journalist and historian will discuss the role of Harris, the young black girl, who dared to ask for a “little more” education in the ongoing quest for citizenship.

Adams’ presentation is also the first to examine race, gender and class in antebellum Connecticut and the complex but simple relationship between two women: Crandall and Harris.

This program is free and open to the public.

For more information, please call (860) 889-2365, ext. 128.

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