2017 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium


Dr. King’s fight must become our fight

A note from Robert Sellers, vice provost for equity and inclusion, and chief diversity officer, about this year’s MLK Symposium, which falls on the heels of the launch of the university’s historic campuswide diversity, equity and inclusion five-year strategic plan.

Issa Rae, Amy Goodman to deliver MLK Symposium keynote

Golden Globe-nominated actress Issa Rae and “Democracy Now!” host Amy Goodman will deliver the 31st Annual Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium keynote memorial lecture.

Fab 5 member Ray Jackson tapped as keynote for Trotter Lecture

Ray Jackson is most famously known for being part of the Fab 5 —U-M’s historic 1991 men’s college basketball recruiting class. But most recently, Jackson’s visits to U-M’s Ann Arbor campus have been more about discussing the social climate than picking up a basketball.

Author will discuss black women who helped U.S. win space race

Margot Lee Shetterly sheds light on the true story of the “human computers” who used math to change their own lives and their country’s future in her book “Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race.”

‘One Drop of Love’ to tell story of race in America

“One Drop of Love,” a multimedia one-woman show starring Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni, will tell the story of the creation of race in the United States, as well as how it affects relationships.

Junot Diaz to give Institute for Social Research lecture

Renowned author Junot Diaz will deliver the 2017 Institute for Social Research MLK Lecture at noon Jan. 18 in the Rackham Auditorium. He is author of “Drown,” “This is How You Lose Her” and  “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” which won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize.

1960s Music and Rebellion: The Soundtrack of Our Lives

The U-M Detroit Center will host the panel “1960s Music and Rebellion: The Soundtrack of our Lives” at 12:30 p.m. Jan. 16 as part of its annual MLK Day activities.

​’Redefining Identity’ art exhibition to celebrate students’ visions of identity

“Redefining Identity,” an exhibition celebrating students’ art that challenges society’s definitions of identity and redefines those narratives, runs from Jan. 9-21.

Galvanizing Social Justice through Comics: Joe Sacco

Leading graphic historical novelist Joe Sacco will chronicle how and why he uses the graphic novel format to catalyze social justice and human rights struggles in the U.S. and around the world.

Panel to discuss language’s impact on health disparities

The Division of Public Safety and Security will host a panel discussion on how differences in language among cultures can affect the care African-American patients and families receive in health care settings.

Activist and poet Eli Clare to talk about ‘bad bodies’

Writer, activist and teacher Eli Clare will use poetry and storytelling at his Jan. 27 presentation to discuss how some bodies and communities in society are deemed bad and disposable.

‘The Fannie Lou Hamer Story’ raises awareness of voting rights activist

“The Fannie Lou Hamer Story,” a one-woman musical starring Mzuri Moyo Aimbaye, will tell the story of civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer and how her work helped lead to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

MLK Symposium 2017 calendar of events

A list of many of the events scheduled for the 2017 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium.



  1. Francesca ZIZZA-LAWRENCE
    on January 16, 2017 at 11:39 am

    In the future please provide, to whomever is doing the closed capitioning, all of the planned speechs ahead of time. I was reading it because I sometimes have hearing issues. Alot of it was misspelled but worse some words were wrong or missed completely. It made terrifically confusing & frustrating.

  2. Brenda Kidd
    on February 11, 2017 at 11:54 pm

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