A new play explores African American women’s activism at the turn of the 20th century.
This is an online-only event hosted on the British Library platform. Bookers are sent a viewing link shortly before the event and are able to watch at any time for 48 hours after the start time.
Join us for the launch of a new one-act play by Pamela Roberts, inspired by her research into the life of Mary Church Terrell and other black women activists. The screening of the play is followed by a Q&A with Pamela, chaired by Imaobong Umoren.
An Evening with Mrs Terrell and Friends by Pamela Roberts
Scotland, 1900. Four African American women gather on the eve of the Women’s World Congress to present their contributions towards racial uplift. The youngest member challenges them for being passive adornments, not progressive advocates, but she learns there is more to these women than originally meets the eye.
Pamela Roberts, FRSA, FRHistS, is an award-winning creative producer, historian and theatre-maker. Her work as the founder and director of Black Oxford Untold Stories challenges the traditional narratives and iconology of one of the oldest universities in Britain, the University of Oxford, by celebrating its black scholars from the turn of the 20th century to the present day. An Evening with Mrs Terrell and Friends brings to life her Eccles Centre Visiting Fellowship research featuring the lives of four African American women from the Washington black elite and their contributions to Civil Rights c.1900.
Imaobong Umoren is an Associate Professor in the Department of International History at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Her work focuses on histories of race, gender, activism and political thought in the Caribbean, Britain and the US. Imaobong Umoren is currently writing her first trade book exploring the long interconnected relationship between Britain and the Caribbean tentatively titled Empire Without End: A History of Britain and the Caribbean which received the 2020-2021 British Library Eccles Centre and Hay Festival Writer's Award.
The development and production of An Evening with Mrs Terrell and Friends has been supported by Arts Council England, the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library, the British Association for American Studies and the US Embassy London.
This screening and discussion is organised by the Eccles Centre in collaboration with the Society for the History of Women in the Americas (SHAW). This event forms part of the annual Gender and History in the Americas seminar series organized by SHAW.The British Library is a charity. Your support helps us open up a world of knowledge and inspiration for everyone. Donate today.