Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Event for Saving the Soul of Georgia

Maurice C. Daniels, dean and professor of the University of Georgia School of Social Work, will discuss SAVING THE SOUL OF GEORGIA: DONALD L. HOLLOWELL AND THE STRUGGLE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS, a biography of the famed civil rights attorney, on Thursday, February 26, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. at the Atlanta-Fulton County Central Library. He will be joined by retired federal judge Horace T. Ward, who practiced law with Hollowell in the 1960s. The event is free and open to the public.

The biography, which has been praised by scholars, continues to earn accolades, most recently from Polly Price of the Emory University School of Law and Kenneth W. Mack, Lawrence D. Biele Professor of Law at Harvard University.

Price’s review of the book, which appeared in the March 2015 issue of Journal of American History, called the biography “compelling.”  Wrote Price, “In Daniels’ hands, court proceedings come to life with a narrative accessible to lawyers and non-lawyers alike. . . . The inclusion of twenty-seven carefully selected photographs further brings to life one of the best biographies of the civil rights era.”

Mack, co-faculty leader of the Harvard Law School Program on Law and History, examined the Hollowell biography along with Yvonne Ryan’s “Roy Wilkins: The Quiet Revolutionary and the NAACP” in the February 2015 issue of American Historical Review. Both authors, he wrote, “have crafted well-researched accounts that explore much-neglected aspects of the history of the civil rights movement.”

“Daniels’s book,” Mack also wrote, “makes a point that needs emphasis: that embedded within the grassroots movements that now occupy much scholarly attention were thousands of everyday legal confrontations where lawyers like Hollowell played an essential role in allowing activists and ordinary African Americans to negotiate a repressive local legal system. . . . there is much to admire in his exploration of the various ways that rank-and-file lawyers like Hollowell were essential in realizing the democratic promise of the movement.”

Judge Horace Ward will also join Daniels for a discussion of the book. Ward was denied admission to the University of Georgia School of Law in the 1950s, but went on to earn a law degree from Northwestern University and returned to Georgia to join Hollowell’s legal team in their successful effort to desegregate the University. He later became a partner in Hollowell’s firm, during which time he worked on several other significant civil rights cases. He went on to serve as a judge in Fulton County, Georgia and the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.  In 2014 he was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree by The University of Georgia.

The event, which will include a book signing, is sponsored by the University of Georgia Press, the Atlanta-Fulton County Public Library System and the Foot Soldier Project for Civil Rights Studies and Research. The library is located at One Margaret Mitchell Square NE, Atlanta, Georgia. For more information, contact Amanda Sharp, University of Georgia Press  (asharp@uga.edu or (706), 542-4145), or Harold Waters (hwaters@uga.edu, (706) 542-5450)).