First Posted: 1/8/2014
The Keystone College Concerts and Lectures Series will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day with the presentation “Getting Right with Dr. King: Where Do We Go From Here?” by Timothy Patrick McCarthy on Monday, Jan. 20 at 7 p.m. in Brooks Theatre.
The eventwill examine the challenges and possibilities of contemporary politics and protest in light of Dr. King’s enduring legacy of prophetic witness and social justice activism.
McCarthy is a lecturer on history and literature and public policy at Harvard University, where he also directs the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. An award-winning scholar, teacher, and activist, he has published four books: “The Radical Reader: A Documentary History of the American Radical Tradition,” “Prophets of Protest: Reconsidering the History of American Abolitionism;” “Protest Nation: Words That Inspired a Century of American Radicalism;” and “The Indispensable Zinn: The Essential Writings of the People’s Historian.”
In addition to his writing and teaching, McCarthy has devoted his life to public service and social justice, particularly around issues of racial, sexual, and socioeconomic justice, educational equity, peace, and human rights. As founding director of Harvard’s Alternative Spring Break Church Rebuilding Program, he has spent the last 15 years organizing groups of undergraduates to help rebuild African-American churches that have been destroyed in arson attacks. In honor of this work, McCarthy received the 2007 Humble Servant Award from the National Coalition for Burned Churches, and the 2010 Advocate Award from the Phillips Brooks House Association.
McCarthy was a founding member of President Barack Obama’s National LGBT Leadership Council, has given expert testimony to the Pentagon Comprehensive Working Group on the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and serves on the boards of the Harvey Milk Foundation and the Harvard Gender and Sexuality Caucus.
In 2010, he was part of a cohort of academics and activists who received a $1.1 million grant from the Ford Foundation to support a cross-disciplinary, applied social science research project to explore the root causes of stigma against LGBT people and develop more effective strategies for achieving full equality and acceptance. In January 2012, Dr. McCarthy was part of the first-ever LGBTQ delegation from the United States to Palestine and Israel. He also serves as vice chair of the board of Free the Slaves, a leading international anti-slavery NGO based in Washington, D.C.