This morning in our Ideas Matter segment, we spotlight New York Humanities and discuss Anne Northup, Slavery, and the Birth of American Cuisine.
12 Years a Slave, which just won the Oscar for Best Picture, tells the story of Solomon Northup who was kidnapped from upstate New York and sold into slavery. Told from his point of view, the movie doesn't tell what happened to his family while he was gone. This week we'll learn about his wife Anne, who worked as a cook at the Morris-Jumel House in New York City.
Our guests are: Carol Ward, Executive Director of Morris-Jumel House and Emilie Gruchow, Archivist at Morris-Jumel House.
Last week in our Ideas Matter segment we learned about an exciting national program, Created Equal, which uses documentary films to encourage public conversations about the changing meanings of freedom and equality in America. This week, we learn about how one local organization is using these films to discuss these ideas in the Capital Region.
Black History Month is here, with a full calendar of events throughout February. Capital Region Bureau Chief Dave Lucas previews some of the first in the region.
At this hour in Albany at the County Office Building, the start of African American History Month is being promoted as "an important time to look back and reflect on the advancements made in equality here in Albany County as well as the nation as a whole."
Today, black-owned barbershops play a central role in African American public life. The intimacy of commercial grooming encourages both confidentiality and camaraderie, which make the barber shop an important gathering place for African American men to talk freely.
But for many years preceding and even after the Civil War, black barbers endured a measure of social stigma for perpetuating inequality: though the profession offered economic mobility to black entrepreneurs, black barbers were obliged by custom to serve an exclusively white clientele.
In his book, Cutting Along the Color Line, Vassar History Professor Quincy Mills chronicles the cultural history of black barber shops as businesses and civic institutions.
A 2010 Gallup poll asking Americans to assess the last nine presidents gave John F. Kennedy the highest ranking and highest approval rating at 85 percent.
Historian Robert Dallek- who the New York Times called Kennedy’s leading biographer, whose JFK biography An Unfinished Life was a number 1 New York Times best seller- was somewhat amused by this appraisal. For while he admired Kennedy tenured, Dallek’s own in depth study of the man and his presidency offered him a new assessment of his achievements and flaws.
The poll rekindled his interest in Kennedy’s leadership and he decided to revisit the subject in his new book Camelot’s Court: Inside the Kennedy White House.
Solomon Northup was a free man who was lured from his home in Saratoga and kidnapped into slavery in 1841. His life is the subject of the upcoming film, 12 Years A Slave which opens at The Spectrum Theatre in Albany this Friday.
The new biography, Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years A Slave provides a compelling chronological narrative of Northup's entire life, from his birth in an isolated settlement in upstate New York to the activities he pursued after his release from slavery.
The biography was written by Clifford Brown, a political science professor at Union College in Schenectady, Rachel Seligman, former head of Union’s gallery (she now works at the Tang at Skidmore College); and David Friske, former librarian for the state.