Episode 5: Pauli Murray

Dead Writer Drama
Dead Writer Drama
Episode 5: Pauli Murray

This month, co-hosts Jennifer and Zakiya discuss the incredible life and work of Pauli Murray with Barbara Lau, Executive Director of the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice.

Pauli Murray lived one of the most remarkable lives of the twentieth century. She was the first Black person to earn a JSD degree from Yale Law School, a founder of the National Organization for Women and the first Black woman to be ordained an Episcopal priest.

Pauli Murray’s legal arguments and interpretation of the US Constitution were winning strategies for public school desegregation, women’s rights in the workplace, and an extension of rights to LGBTQ+ people based on Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

The American Writers Museum presents this podcast as a small preview of its upcoming exhibit and content initiative, Dark Testament: A Century of Black Writers on Justice. This initiative will launch in stages across 2022 and takes its name from Pauli Murray’s amazing poem, Dark Testament as both her work and her story are fundamental example of the continual resonance of the powerful writing from black writers from the Civil War through the Civil Rights Era that still reflect and shape the world today.

About the hosts: Jennifer Keishin Armstrong is the author of the New York Times bestseller Seinfeldia and her new book When Women Invented Television. Zakiya Dalila Harris’ debut novel, The Other Black Girl, is a New York Times bestseller and is available from Atria Books in the US, and Bloomsbury Books in the UK.


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