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Robert Korstad, professor of public policy and history, will direct an institute for 30 teachers next summer titled “The Civil Rights Movement: Grassroots Perspectives.” The institute is made possible by a grant totaling $188,974 from the National Endowment for the Humanities and will be hosted by the Franklin Humanities Institute.

Man smiling
Robert Korstad

The summer institute will bring together teachers from across the United States for a three-week residency at Duke University in July 2018. A collaborative team of scholars, veterans of the civil rights movement, and educators from Duke, the SNCC Legacy Project, and Teaching for Change designed the institute to help participants learn the bottom-up history of the civil rights movement. Participants will have a unique opportunity to learn from the people who made the civil rights movement happen and from the leading scholars of the era.

This is particularly important since many history teachers earned their degrees before the publication of recent scholarship on the history of the civil rights movement.

“New scholarship has greatly enhanced our understanding of the civil rights movement, particularly at the local level,” said Korstad. “This institute will help teachers and students share in these new discoveries.”

Participants will engage in a rigorous examination of key historical events such as the uprising of tobacco workers in Winston-Salem, the Montgomery bus boycott, the Greensboro sit-in, the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, and the Lowndes Country Freedom Organization.

The study of these events will provide the models for participants to generate stories from their own city or state. Each participant will produce an interactive multi-touch e-book about a key event or individual from their own area. Participants will return to their classrooms with new pedagogical resources, strategies and skills.

“The Civil Rights Movement: Grassroots Perspectives” Summer Institute is co-sponsored by the Franklin Humanities Institute and the Duke Human Rights Center at the Franklin Humanities Institute.