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2021 Media & Civil Rights History Symposium

The 2021 Media & Civil Rights History Symposium is sponsored by the UofSC College of Information and Communications in partnership with the UofSC Center for Civil Rights History and Research. This year's theme is: Social Justice and the Media. The symposium will be free and held virtually.

Keynote Speaker

Pulitzer Prize-winner Nikole Hannah-Jones, creator of the landmark 1619 Project, will be the keynote speaker for the 2021 virtual Media & Civil Rights History Symposium and the College of Information and Communications Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Research Symposium.

The conversation-style presentation will be held Friday, March 26, from noon to 1:30 p.m. The virtual session is free and open to the public but registration is required.  

The session is sponsored by the UofSC College of Information and Communications and the UofSC Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Hannah-Jones will be in conversation with Nicole Cooke, Augusta Baker Endowed Chair in Childhood Literacy, and Bobby Donaldson, director of the UofSC Center for Civil Rights History and Research who will engage her in a dialogue about race, social justice, and media. Questions from the audience will also be taken.


Registration and Schedule

Registration for all parts of the virtual symposium is free, but registration is required. When you register, please check the individual sessions you plan to attend. You will be sent a separate link for each a day or so prior to the symposium.

Links for each of the sessions will be posted here a day prior to the conference.

Register here »


Thursday, March 25, 2021


Session 1 - Opening Session: Civil Rights in South Carolina

6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Claudia Smith Brinson, author, Stories of Struggle: The Clash over Civil Rights in South Carolina (2020), and in conversation with civil rights photographer and author Cecil Williams and author and civil rights activist James Felder.


Friday, March 26, 2021


Session 2 - Research Session: MAC 50th Anniversary

9 a.m. -- 10:15 a.m.
This session celebrates the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Minorities and Communication Division (MAC) of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. Several research papers will be presented.


Session 3 - Panel

10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
John McCray and Modjeska Simkins: Two South Carolina Civil Rights Activists and Legendary Journalists


Session 4 - Keynote

Noon – 1:30 p.m. 
In Conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning Journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones: A Fireside Chat. Hannah-Jones, a staff writer for the New York Times Magazine, won the award for commentary in 2020 for her essay introducing the landmark 1619 Project.

Sponsored by UofSC College of Information and Communications and the UofSC Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.


Session 5 - Panel: Social Justice and the Media: Views from the Road

1:45 p.m. - 3 p.m. 
This panel will share observations from the book Genus Americanus: Hitting the Road in Search of America’s Identity by Loren Ghiglione. The book is based on 150 interviews Professor Ghiglione and two of his Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism students collected about race, sexual orientation, and other hot-button identity issues during a trip across America.


Session 6 - A Conversation with Civil Rights Journalist and Documentarian Steve Crump

3:15 p.m. -- 4:30 p.m.

In his more than 40-year career, Steve Crump has covered some of the most critical civil rights  events and issues of our time and has produced more than 20 documentaries that focus on the Civil Rights Movement as well as African Americans. His subjects include Congressman John Lewis; the Orangeburg Massacre; school desegregation; Rock Hill’s sit-in demonstrators, known as  the “Friendship Nine”; and Columbia’s Sarah Mae Flemming, who protested bus segregation 17 months before Rosa Parks. His documentary “Orangeburg Massacre 50 Years Later” received an Emmy Award in 2019. The National Association of Black Journalists honored Crump in 2016 with their first Journalist of the Year Award recognizing a journalist in a small or medium-sized market. He was recognized for his exceptional coverage of the tragic shooting at Mother Emmanuel Church in Charleston on June 17, 2015 that took the lives of nine African Americans. Crump is a journalist with WBTV in Charlotte.


The Farrar Award

The 2021 Ronald T. and Gayla D. Farrar Award in Media & Civil Rights History, given biennially, to recognize the best journal article or chapter in an edited collection on the historical relationship between the media and civil rights published during the previous two years, will be presented at a later date.


Contact Us

Dr. Kenneth Campbell
Media & Civil Rights History Symposium
School of Journalism and Mass Communications
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208
Email:  kcampbell@sc.edu


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