The Transformative Power
of the Narrative

The power of personal narrative can sometimes be easily overlooked. However, history has shown that individual stories can have an impact on whole societies. The transformation of a person’s story of struggle and perseverance into a movement is the subject of the exhibit on display.

Visitors will have an opportunity to learn about five storytellers. Their stories have touched the minds of millions and continue to impact society. They do not provide comfort or reassurance to readers; they did not affirm the beliefs of their society; nor did they conform to the standards of acceptability for their time. Instead, these stories accentuate the deeper truths, the truths that are universal in scope, unlimited by time or place in history and therefore never fully embodied by any community. These truths are goals for which we continually strive but perpetually fail to fully actualize. The stories highlighted here record not just the lives of some extraordinary people but our society’s journey in becoming a more just, more humane and ultimately more equal one for all people.

The Black Press in New York
Black Film and Television
Sojourner Truth
Frederick Douglass
Solomon Northrup
Toni Morrison
Alex Haley

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