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Playlist: John Lumagui's Portfolio

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The Unghosting of Medgar Evers

From WUKY | 59:00

A look at one of the turning points of the Civil Rights struggle 50 years later: the assassination of Medgar Evers. With poetry by Frank X. Walker, music of 1963 and historical accounts.

Unghost_small 2013 marks the 50th Anniversary of the Assassination of Civil Rights leader Medgar Evers by Byron De La Beckwith.  We'll examine this critical time in the Civil Rights movement with poems from Turn Me Loose:  The Unghosting of Medgar Evers by Frank X. Walker.  You'll also hear historical accounts of the time, as well as music from 1963.

Frank X. Walker is Professor of English at the University of Kentucky, and the Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the first African-American to hold the position.  His collection of poems is published by University of Georgia Press.  Walker takes on the persona of each of the major players in the incident when reading the poems.  Since Walker used period-correct speech of the time, there is use of the N-word in the second part of the show, listener discretion is advised.

Historical context is provided by Dr. Everett McCorvey, head of the University of Kentucky Opera Department, who is a native of Montgomery, Alabama.  He was a child during the most hectic years of the Civil Right movement, and has first-hand recollections of what happened.  Dr. Gerald Smith is Professor of History at the University of Kentucky, and provides an historic background of the major players in this incident.

The show is hosted and produced by DeBraun Thomas for WUKY. Funding for this program comes from the University of Kentucky's College of Arts & Sciences and the College of Fine Arts.  More information about the materials used in the show can be found at http://www.wuky.org/evers