Published on March 20, 2018 by Sean Flynt  
Stockham Symposium
Civil Rights Marchers in Alabama (Peter Pettus, Library of Congress)

Samford University’s Howard College of Arts and Sciences will hold a symposium on the subject of “Where do we go from here? Martin Luther King Jr., Race, and America’s Future” April 16-17. The event–the inaugural Samford Stockham Symposium on Western Ideas and Institutions–will present a plenary address by 16th Street Baptist Church pastor Arthur Price and panel discussions featuring Samford faculty and distinguished guests from Birmingham-area institutions, including:

Jonathan Bass, Samford History Department chair and author of Blessed Are the Peacemakers and He Calls Me By Lightning: The Life of Caliph Washington and the Forgotten Saga of Jim Crow, Southern Justice, and the Death Penalty

Teresa Davidson, Samford associate professor of sociology

Wilson Fallin, professor history, University of Montevallo

Tondra Loder-Jackson, associate professor, Educational Foundations/ African American Studies, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Arthur Price, Pastor, 16th Street Baptist Church, Birmingham, Ala.

LeeAnn Reynolds, Samford associate professor of history and author of Maintaining Segregation: Children and Racial Instruction in the South, 1920-1955.

Jennifer Speights-Binet, Samford Geography Department chair

Samford history professor Jason Wallace, Stockham Chair of Western Intellectual History, is organizing the event in response to Samford president Andrew Westmoreland’s charge for the university to seriously engage with issues of race. “This symposium is a small attempt to offer such engagement,” Wallace said.

Wallace, who also leads the university’s Core Texts Program, also said that although Martin Luther King Jr.’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail has long been used extensively in the university’s core classes, starting this fall it will be a required text for all 900+ Samford freshmen.

“To mark the introduction of this text as a requirement, as well as the somber occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination, the Stockham Symposium is initiating this conversation about his legacy, race, and America’s future,” Wallace said.

Symposium Schedule

All events will be held in Brooks Hall Auditorium (room 134)

Monday April 16

3– 4:30 p.m.                   Panel Discussion

7 p.m.                             Plenary Speaker: The Rev. Arthur Price

Tuesday April 17

3 – 4 PM                    Student-Led Panel Discussion


To learn more contact

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.