World-renowned political activist Angela Davis left memorable words with hundreds at Florida A&M’s Lee Hall Thursday.
“This was an event that I will never forget,” said Barry Archie, a fourth-year business administration student. “It was amazing, enriching and powerful to see someone who was actually involved in the movement and struggle.”
Nearly every seat was filled for “All Black Everything: An Evening with Dr. Angela Davis,” as Davis wrapped up the third-annual Women’s History Month celebration with a lecture on women in the world.
Davis took the audience from generation to generation, explaining that freedom is still a constant struggle in society.
“Angela Davis is wrapping up a phenomenal week,” said mistress of ceremony Professor Gina Kinchlow. “The purposes of these events are to reaffirm FAMU women.”
Kinchlow, of the School of Journalism & Graphic Communication, said this event would allow the current generation to catch up by listening to Davis’ story.
While the purpose of the event was to celebrate black women and their role in the freedom movement, Davis also wanted to shed light on other issues that are prominent in today’s society.
She suggested African-Americans haven’t come nearly as far as people assumed, looking at the different struggles still apparent in society like racism and violence.
“Racism still affects the thoughts and emotions of people in the United States,” Davis said. “Trayvon is just the latest victim of violence that is still going on.”
Trayvon Martin, 17, was shot and killed by a neighborhood watchman in Sanford, Fla.
She told the audience they live in a society that is saturated with violence, mostly toward women.
Davis told listeners that one of the most dangerous venues in our society is family. She said violence is many times passed through generations and women are still being punished behind doors at home. She referenced the Chris Brown and Rihanna case, noting they both grew up with exposure to violence, which has made them more prone to accept it.
Education was also a focal point.
Davis said without education there is no liberation. She said she believes education is the alternative to incarceration. However, she thinks that schools have become institutions of incarceration.
Society should teach children the joy of learning and using their imaginations rather than focusing on discipline.
After being asked what she thought about the new Black Panther Party, Davis said it was an extreme phenomenon and that history is unrepeatable, referring to the origins of the activist group.
She said the Black Panther Party empowered many around the world and had history no one could recreate.
“Hearing Ms. Davis speak on her involvement in the movement was an eye opener,” said Ashley Williams, a member of the event committee. “We should have more events like this. It was the perfect timing for an event like this and it has empowered me as a woman.”
Davis left with one final thought: “If one is free but does not struggle for the freedom of others, they are truly not free.”