Author Talk: History: Celebrating Ida B. Wells’ Birthday with Author Michelle Duster

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Wednesday, July 14th at 8pm ET: PBS Books, in partnership with The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), presents this Author Talk with Michelle Duster about her book Ida B. The Queen: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Ida B. Wells. This night will be a birthday celebration for Ida B. Wells, and a time to learn more about her fantastic feats, which earned her a posthumous Pulitzer Prize just recently in 2020. As the great-granddaughter of one of the most iconic American trailblazers, Duster will explore her own family history alongside our viewers. This special event will further illuminate an incredible legacy and chart how we can continue Wells’ work in search of equality and justice for all.

About the Book

Duster’s 2021 book Ida B. The Queen: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Ida B. Wells discusses her remarkable great-grandmother, Ida B. Wells (1862-1931). At once a research-fueled, deep dive into Wells’ life, and a personal narrative about Duster’s own self-discovery and activism, the book is a combination of lessons of the past and visions for the future. As America sees its first Black woman Vice President in office, the story of this American civil rights pioneer is more resonant than ever. Wells’ staunch defense of Black lives, advocacy for universal suffrage, and organizing work (co-founding of the NAACP) are just a few of numerous examples when she used her individual strength and voice to advocate for others. Now, generations later, Duster takes up the family’s mission through thoughtful analysis and writing. Connecting their bond of womanhood across centuries, Duster illustrates Wells’ journey from ferocious teen to pioneering journalist to anti-lynching crusader.

About the Author

Michelle Duster is a writer, speaker, professor, and champion of racial and gender equity. In the last dozen years, she has written, edited, or contributed to over a dozen books. She co-wrote the popular children’s history book, Tate and His Historic Dream; coedited Impact: Personal Portraits of Activism and Michelle Obama’s Impact on African American Women and Girls; and edited two books that include the writings of her great-grandmother, Ida B. Wells. She has written articles for Essence, Refinery29, HuffPo, Teen Vogue, Glamour, People and The North Star.

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