Let Freedom Ring Series


January 15, 2018 - January 19, 2018


Arts and Culture Lectures and Speakers


AU Campus


Years ago, as he spoke from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to the crowd massed on the National Mall, Martin Luther King Jr. exhorted America to “let freedom ring.” He paraphrased a line from a favorite patriotic song to describe a challenge fundamental to the American experience. As the Aurora University community celebrates the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, we examine the meaning of equality and freedom of speech in contemporary America.

With the exception of the Celebrating Arts and Ideas film on Wednesday, all events are open only to students, faculty and staff.


National holiday: No classes


Noon | University Banquet Hall
Speaker Sammy Rangel presents “Life After Hate”
A former member of an extremist group, Rangel shares his powerful story of seeking redemption and freedom from a lifestyle of self- destructive behavior based around hate, power, violence and control.

 7 p.m. | Perry Theatre
“Martin Luther King Jr. Night of Diversity and Expression”
Students share expressions of freedom and unity through song, word and poetry dedicated to celebrating and reflecting on the message of Martin Luther King Jr.


11 a.m. | University Banquet Hall
Faculty round table: “Freedom of Speech vs. Hate Speech”
Dr. Mark Petersen, Dr. Brandon Kooi, Dr. Libby Escobedo and Dr. Dawn Livorsi discuss how academic disciplines approach this contemporary topic and contribute to the national conversation.

7 p.m. | Perry Theatre
Film and discussion: “12 Years a Slave” (adult content)
Register at auartsandideas.com.


10 a.m. | Dunham Hall Atrium
“Words Matter”
Words followed by actions have the power to create change in our world. Join Dr. Aubrey Southall and secondary education junior and senior AU students to create compliment cards that share positive and uplifting words throughout our university community.

Noon | Perry Theatre
“Hate Crimes, Bias Incidents and Creating Inclusive Communities”
During this interactive session with members from the Anti-Defamation League, we explore the nature of hate crime laws, differences between hate crimes and bias incidents, and ways to create inclusive communities.


Noon | Tapper Recital Hall
“Memphis: 50 Years Later”
Dr. Frank Buscher, Vice President for Academic Affairs and long-time resident of Memphis, leads a presentation looking back on what has changed and what has remained the same in Memphis since King’s assassination in 1968.