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Since 2010, The University of Delaware’s Center for Political Communication has hosted the National Agenda Speaker and Film Series. We are very thankful to our sponsors for making the events possible. This year, we are proud to announce that all events will involve discussions about “Race in America.”

All events are Wednesday evenings in the Fall at 7:30 p.m. in historic Mitchell Hall.

With Millennials coming of age as the most diverse generation in the nation’s history, the deaths of black Americans around the country in confrontation with white authorities have reminded us that 60 years after the Supreme Court’s decision on racial segregation in public schools triggered the Civil Rights Era, Americans remain divided by issues of race.

 UD’s Center for Political Communication announces its National Agenda 2015 program, “Race in America.” The combined speaker and film series will work to generate thought-provoking and civil dialogue about the context and history of race in America, and to encourage students, staff, faculty, and community members to join the conversation. National Agenda 2015 will be moderated by Dr. Lindsay Hoffman, who teaches Communication and Political Science, and is the CPC’s Associate Director.

Audience members will have the opportunity to ask questions of the speakers, and all programs will be recorded and made available online after the event.

The CPC’s National Agenda Film Series, which debuted in 2014, will also focus on Race in America, and students and others will have an opportunity to use social media to engage in a public discussion of the films.


Sept. 9

Bill Plante, CBS News Correspondent

Bill Plante is a veteran CBS News White House correspondent. Plante covered the civil rights movement, including Dr. Martin Luther King’s march from Selma to Montgomery in 1965. Plante recently returned to Selma in March 2015 to cover the 50th anniversary celebration of the historic march for voting rights.

View the conversation here and read about it in UDaily.

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 Photo by Duane Perry

Sept. 16

Film Screening:Dear White People”

Released in 2014, “Dear White People” is Justin Simien’s first full-length feature film. This satire explores racial identity in ‘post-racial’ America while weaving a universal story of forging one’s unique path in the world. Simien won the Best First Screenplay Award from the 2015 Spirit Awards and the U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent from the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.



Sept. 30

Johnetta Elzie and DeRay Mckesson, Civil Rights Activists

Johnetta (Netta) Elzie has become an international storyteller for the Black Lives Matter movement. Since she attended her first protest in Ferguson last August, she has used Twitter to create a loyal following.

DeRay Mckesson and Netta created We the Protesters and Campaign Zero to reduce police violence and provide tools for protesters. He has 230,000 followers on Twitter, which both he and Netta use to communicate with fellow activists and a wider audience.

Both Netta and DeRay were listed on Fortune Magazine’s Top 50 World Leaders in 2015. They were also awarded the Howard Zinn Freedom to Write Award in 2015 for their activism.

View the conversation here and read about it in UDaily.


National Agenda - 9/30/15Photo by Ambre Alexander Payne

Oct. 7

Film Screening: “Mississippi Burning”

This 1988 crime thriller is based on the 1964 murders of three civil rights activists in Mississppi. It stars Gene Hackman and Willem Dafoe as FBI investigators who travel to Jessup County when the civil rights workers go missing. It won the best filmmaking and best cinematography awards at the 1989 Academy Awards.



Miss Burning

Oct. 14

Peter Bailey, Journalist and Interviewer

Peter Bailey is a Miami journalist and creator of the critically acclaimed docu-series “NiteCap with Peter Bailey.” Bailey has interviewed entertainers like Waka Flocka, as well as Wyclef Jean, 50 Cent, and Ice T. Bailey began NiteCap after penning Trick Daddy’s memoir, “Magic City: Trials of a Native Son.”

View the conversation here and read about it in UDaily.

National Agenda 101415Photo by Duane Perry

Oct. 21

Maz Jobrani, Comedian and Author of “I’m Not a Terrorist, But I’ve Played One on TV”

Maz Jobrani is a founding member of the Axis of Evil Comedy Tour and has had two Showtime specials. He performs stand-up all over the world and his best-selling book, “I’m Not a Terrorist, But I’ve Played One on TV” was published in 2015.

View the conversation here and read about it in UDaily.


National Agenda 102115Photo by Duane Perry

Oct. 28

 Film Screening: “Bamboozled”

This 2000 film directed by Spike Lee features television executives who produce a modern version of a minstrel show with racist imagery and language. To their horror, the show becomes a huge success, leading to a tragic downfall for the creators.



Nov. 4

Keith Knight, Political Cartoonist

Keith Knight is a highly regarded cartoonist and the creator of three popular comic strips: the Knight Life, (th)ink, and the K Chronicles. His art has appeared in publications worldwide, including the Washington Post, Salon.com, and Ebony. His talk features his artwork over the last 20 years, and is calledThey Shoot Black People, Don’t They?”

View the conversation here and read about it in UDaily.


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Nov. 11

Film Screening: “The People’s Report” with a Q&A from the Director,  Yasser Arafat Payne, Ph.D.

The People’s Report is an ethnographic community needs assessment of two of Wilmington’s oldest and most violent neighborhoods: Eastside and Southbridge. The film documents community residents from these neighborhoods who have experience in the streets and/or criminal justice system to  examine the impact of community violence.

Watch the Q&A here and read about it in UD’s student newspaper, The Review.”


Yasser Payne 2

Nov. 18

Redditt Hudson, Co-founder of the National Coalition of Law Enforcement for Justice, Reform, and Accountability

Redditt Hudson is a founder of the National Coalition of Law Enforcement Officers for Justice, Reform, and Accountability.  He is a former St. Louis police officer, and left the force in 1999 to address systemic problems in the criminal justice system. He is the author of “Suffering in Silence,” an investigative report that catalogued human rights abuses in St. Louis City jails.

View the whole conversation here and read about it in UDaily.

National Agenda -  Redditt Hudson