A Chronology: 1975

Compiled by Howard Dodson

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1975

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Jesse Lang, author of “Inside Missouri State Penitentiary” dies of unknown causes while still incarcerated at Missouri State Penitentiary. Imprisoned since 1968, Lang became an astute analyst of the sociology of prisons. His “Inside…” was a penetrating analysis and critique of the social structure and culture of Missouri State Penitentiary. Publication of it is believed to have triggered the prison’s attacks on him. A later essay, “Details of My Nervous Breakdown,” is published by IBW following his death in January 1975.

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Eight students receive their B.A. and B.S. degrees from IBW’s Atlanta-based component of the Shaw University (Raleigh, N.C.) University Without Walls Program. Established and administered by IBW since 1973, the program offered college level courses to individuals who could not, because of work or other responsibilities, attend traditional colleges. Most had completed the equivalent of three years of college and could use work experience toward completing their requirements.

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Three burglaries and numerous bomb threats threaten the future of IBW. Losses of equipment and confidential records and business files further challenge the financially challenged organization.

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Elizabeth Catlett donates 500 portfolios of her art, “The Black Woman Speaks,” to help raise funds to replace the losses. Special appeals generate more than $3,500.00 in the first month from friends and supporters.

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Second edition of Lerone Bennett, Jr.’s Challenge of Blackness is published as IBW and Education for Liberation by Third World Press as an IBW Black Paper.

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IBW Press publishes Norman Girvan’s “Aspects of the Political Economy of Race in the Caribbean and the Americas: A Preliminary Interpretation” as an Occasional Paper.

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IBW Fellows hold a two-day Roundtable discussion with Walter Rodney in May on issues of race and class in black struggle. A Robert Hill edited version of the conversation is published by African World Press as Walter Rodney Speaks.

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Grace and James Boggs were part of a second Roundtable discussion with IBW’s research fellows in June.

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IBW’s on-site staff includes Farrel Thomas, Ruth Harmon, Lynn Suruma, Louise Jackson, Mencer Donahue Edwards, Betty Norwood Chaney, Malaika Adero, Bill Dorsey, Fay Bellamy, and Howard Dodson.

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Robert Hill compiles, edits and publishes a reprint edition of all of the extant issues of Marcus Garvey’s final monthly publication, The Blackman (1933-1939) with Kraus Thompson Organization Ltd. Hill writes extensive introduction.

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Black-World-Review column is circulated to 80 black newspapers and journals.

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IBW produces and disseminates a cassette-tape package of lectures by Vincent Harding entitled “The Other American Revolution.” It is an audio recording of the main themes in the soon to be published book of the same title.

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In conjunction with documentary filmmaker St. Clair Bourne and WOTV (Athens, GA) IBW develops a treatment outline for an educational television series based on Vincent Harding’s “The Other American Revolution.”

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In conjunction with the Smithsonian Institution and the Atlanta Bureau of Parks, IBW sponsors a three-day folk festival featuring touring Jamaican artists.

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IBW publishes “Going to the Promised Land: Afro-American Immigrants in Ethiopia, 1930-1935” by William R. Scott in its Occasional Papers Series.