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MLK celebration

Women in Action: Pursuing the Dream

Angela Davis portrait

Angela Davis
Author, Educator, Social Justice Advocate, and Co-founder of Critical Resistance
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Dinner
Wednesday, January 29, 2020
5 p.m., Show Me Center

Through her activism and scholarship over many decades, Angela Davis has been deeply involved in movements for social justice around the world. Her work as an educator – both at the university level and in the larger public sphere – has always emphasized the importance of building communities of struggle for economic, racial, and gender justice.

Professor Davis’ teaching career has taken her to San Francisco State University, Mills College, and UC Berkeley. She also has taught at UCLA, Vassar, Syracuse University the Claremont Colleges, and Stanford University. Most recently she spent fifteen years at the University of California Santa Cruz where she is now Distinguished Professor Emerita of History of Consciousness – an interdisciplinary Ph.D program – and of Feminist Studies.

Angela Davis is the author of ten books and has lectured throughout the United States as well as in Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, and South America. In recent years a persistent theme of her work has been the range of social problems associated with incarceration and the generalized criminalization of those communities that are most affected by poverty and racial discrimination. She draws upon her own experiences in the early seventies as a person who spent eighteen months in jail and on trial, after being placed on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted List.” She also has conducted extensive research on numerous issues related to race, gender and imprisonment. Her recent books include Abolition Democracy and Are Prisons Obsolete? about the abolition of the prison industrial complex, a new edition of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, and a collection of essays entitled The Meaning of Freedom. Her most recent book of essays, called Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement, was published in February 2016.

Angela Davis is a founding member of Critical Resistance, a national organization dedicated to the dismantling of the prison industrial complex. Internationally, she is affiliated with Sisters Inside, an abolitionist organization based in Queensland, Australia that works in solidarity with women in prison.

Like many educators, Professor Davis is especially concerned with the general tendency to devote more resources and attention to the prison system than to educational institutions. Having helped to popularize the notion of a “prison industrial complex,” she now urges her audiences to think seriously about the future possibility of a world without prisons and to help forge a 21st century abolitionist movement.

Donate today to the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship (General Scholarships, EM010)

Quentin Lee portrait

Special Guest: Quentin Lee

Quentin Oliver Lee has been honored to sing for hundreds of thousands of people all over the world in stadiums, black boxes, subways, and on the most prestigious stages in the country. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut as a featured soloist in the 2019-2020 production of Porgy and Bess. Mr. Lee also made his Broadway debut in Prince of Broadway, an autobiographical work based on the life of the legendary Hal Prince, directed by both Mr. Prince and Susan Stroman. Quentin recently returned from the Broadway Tour of Phantom of the Opera, where he performed as the title character over 500 times.

He has performed several other roles on stage, some of his favorites include: Killian and Ottokar in Der Freischutz with Heartbeat Opera; Scar in the Festival of the Lion King in Hong Kong; The Count in The Marriage of Figaro; Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor; the title role in Gianni Schicchi, and Belcore in L'elisir D'amore.

Mr. Lee was named a Western Regional Finalist in both the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the National Association of Teachers of Singers Artist Awards. In the winter of 2012 Quentin Lee received a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Northern Arizona University. While at NAU, Mr. Lee held a teaching position with the Flagstaff School of Music, was President of the student chapter of NATS, was a member of the Cardinal Key Honor Society, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and was a soloist and chorister for the Shrine of the Ages choir, with whom he performed at several ACDA conferences, in a tour of South Africa, and at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Quentin’s passion and enthusiasm for learning, acting, and singing continually inspire him to achieve the heights of his own personal artistry and share that gift of music with the world. Mr. Lee, a native of San Bernardino, CA, has been married to Angie Lee Graham, a Utah native and a fellow performer since August 2015.


Black History Month Campus Events
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Dinner
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Resources


Academic Hall Room 010-011
MLK Celebration
One University Plaza, MS 3375
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701