MARCH, a graphic memoir about the life of civil rights icon John Lewis, has been chosen by the One Book, One UIS Planning Committee as the campus community read for the 2015/2016 academic year. Congressman Lewis, co-author Andrew Aydin and Illustrator Nate Powell have agreed to speak at UIS. Their presentation will be on Monday, October 19 at 7:00 in Sangamon Auditorium.
Contact: Should you wish to include MARCH in a course during the 2015/2016 academic year, please contact Karen Moranski at firstname.lastname@example.org or 217-206-7440; or Kimberly Craig at email@example.com or 217-206-6245. For any other information about the 2015/2016 choice please contact Janelle Gurnsey in the Brookens Library: firstname.lastname@example.org or 217-206-8451. We will release information about additional programming as it is planned. For more information about the One Book, One UIS program, including selection criteria, please see: www.onebookoneuis.com.
Congressman John Lewis
John Lewis has been a member of the United States House of Representatives since 1986, representing the Georgia 5th District. Born the son of sharecroppers in Pike County, Alabama, Lewis became a civil rights activist while a student at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, organizing sit-ins and participating in freedom rides. From 1963-1966, Lewis chaired the Student Nonviolent Organizing Committee (SNCC) of which he was a founder.
The title of the book MARCH comes from the many marches that Lewis organized or participated in, including one of the most well-remembered moments in civil rights history—the march over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. Lewis was one of the organizers of the march, which drew nationwide attention when the non-violent marchers were attacked by Alabama state troopers. Many historians believe that the images of cruelty from the Selma march were a factor in the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Over the years, Lewis has received many prestigious awards, including the Medal of Freedom (the nation’s highest civilian honor) and the only John F. Kennedy “Profile in Courage” Lifetime Achievement Award ever granted by the John F. Kennedy Foundation. He has recently been named as the recipient of the Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government given each year by the Institute of Government and Public Affairs of the University of Illinois. A ceremony to present the award to Congressman Lewis, hosted by Senator Dick Durbin, will be held on April 29 in Washington, DC.
MARCH is planned as a three-volume trilogy. At UIS, we will be reading volumes one and two. MARCH: Book One has received numerous awards, including a 2014 American Library Association (ALA) Coretta Scott King Author Honor Award and an ALA Notable Children’s Book designation. It was also named a “Top Ten Graphic Novel for Teens” by the Young Adults Library Services Association (YALSA) of ALA and made the “best books of 2013” lists of USA Today, The Washington Post, Slate and others. MARCH: Book Two has just been published and has already garnered a starred review from Kirkus Reviews.