Separate Is Not Equal - Brown v. Board of Education

Smithsonian National Museum of American History Behring Center

Public Programs



Throughout February 2006
Lift Every Voice Tour: "Walking Montgomery: The Voices of the Montgomery Bus Boycott"
Fifty years ago, the African American community in Montgomery, Alabama came together to force an end to segregation on city buses. Their organized protest lasted for 381 days and ignited a movement that changed our nation in innumerable ways. Using the words of those who took great risks to win the battle for civil rights, museum tour guides brought the story of the bus boycott to life in this interactive program. 20 minute program presented in Separate Is Not Equal: Brown v. Board of Education, 1:00 PM, 2:00 PM, 3:00 PM, and 4:00 PM.
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
Asian Americans and Brown v. Board: Equal Opportunity in Education
Ling-chi Wang, professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, discussed his prominent role in establishing minority language rights in American education and the larger implications of race relations during the past half century. He also suggested global trends affecting race and language in the future. A question and answer session followed. 6:30 p.m., Carmichael Auditorium.
Saturday, June 19, 2004
Reel Americans: February One
The 1954 Supreme Court declaration that "separate is not equal" inspired a generation of civil rights activists. February One told the story of the Greensboro lunch counter sit-ins, exploring the impact of that demonstration on the civil rights movement, on the city of Greensboro, and on the lives of the four young men who led it. A discussion with Franklin McCain, one of the "Greensboro Four", followed the screening. Carmichael Auditorium, 1 p.m.
Monday, May 17, 2004
Meet the Author: Jack Greenberg, Crusaders in the Courts: Legal Battles of the Civil Rights Movement
Jack Greenberg, as attorney with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, argued the Brown v. Board of Education cases before the Supreme Court. On the 50th anniversary of that decision, in a conversation moderated by Julian Bond, NAACP Chair, Greenberg reflected on the organization that helped change American society. Book signing followed. 12:30 p.m., Reception Suite.
Monday, May 17, 2004
Washington Post: Live Online- Curator Harry Rubenstein was online Monday, May 17 at 3:30 p.m. ET to discuss the exhibit and the anniversary of the landmark case.
Saturday, May 15, 2004
The Museum marked the opening of the exhibition Separate Is Not Equal: Brown v. Board of Education with special music, docent-guided tours, and films. The documentaries, Simple Justice and With All Deliberate Speed: The Legacy of Brown v. Board, were introduced by filmmakers Avon Kirkland and Sharon Baker. 12-4 p.m. First Floor, Taylor Gallery.
Wednesday, May 12, 2004
Opening Reception
The exhibition Separate is Not Equal was previewed at an opening reception featuring Dr. John Hope Franklin, Professor Emeritus of History at Duke University and author of many important publications on African American history—including the landmark book From Slavery to Freedom.
Professor Franklin was introduced by Dr. James Horton, Professor of History at George Washington University and Director of the African American Communities Project at the National Museum of American History.
View Video of Dr. Franklin's Speech (with introduction)
Friday, April 2
Gallery Talk
The Tumultous Fifties. Harry Rubenstein discussed the response to Brown v. Board of Education. Noon. 3rd floor west.
Friday and Saturday, February 20-21, 2004
Symposium. Race and Rights: Brown v. Board of Education and the Problems of Segregation, Desegregation, and Resegregation in the United States.

This two-day program was a prelude to the Museum’s exhibition in May. Friday evening’s program featured a keynote address by activist, historian, and theologian Vincent Harding of the Iliff Theological Seminary and choral music. A reception followed. On Saturday, panels featuring renowned scholars on issues of race and law explored segregation and white privilege, the aftermath of Brown, and the role of Howard University Law School. Friday, 7-9 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m., National Museum of American History, Carmichael Auditorium.

Wednesday, February 4, 2004
What Is This Thing Called Race?

Race is so fundamental to discussions of contemporary American life that, regardless of our opinions, few of us question the reality of racial distinctions. A lively forum featured excerpts from a new documentary, "Race: The Power of an Illusion," which offers evidence that the idea of race is a biological myth. Participants included John A. Powell, legal scholar and executive director of the Kirwin Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at Ohio State University; James Horton, president-elect of the Organization of American Historians; and Vence Bonham of the National Genome Research Institute. Franklin Odo, director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Program, moderates the discussion. A reception followed. 6:30 p.m., National Museum of American History, Carmichael Auditorium.

Sponsors: California Newsreel, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies, Smithsonian Heritage Months Steering Committee