The MIT Wives Group will sponsor a four-session discussion of race relations in the United States and other countries, beginning February 10.
"The program will combine feature and documentary film to stimulate discussion of race-related issues in America, how we have dealt with them (both successfully and not), and of how our experiences compare with those in other countries," said Medical Department social worker Jessica Barton, Wives Group coordinator. The program is funded by a grant from the MIT Committee on Campus Race Relations and has been organized by Sue Sherwood, formerly with the MIT Japan Program.
The discussion series will include a showing of the feature film The Long Walk Home, based on actual events surrounding the historic Montgomery bus boycott of 1955, and the first hour of the PBS documentary Eyes on the Prize, covering the culture of segregation, the murder of Emmet Till and the bus boycott from its beginning until its resolution.
The Long Walk Home, starring Whoopi Goldberg and Sissy Spacek, explores the relationship between a rich white woman and a black maid and how the bus boycott affects them and their relationship with each other. The films and discussion will be divided into four sessions. A list of suggested supplementary materials as well as copies of relevant articles from recent newspapers and magazines will be distributed.
The free sessions, open to the entire MIT community, will be from 3-5pm on February 10, 17 and 24 and March 3 in the Stratton Student Center Rm W20-400. Child care will be provided.
For more than 25 years, the MIT Wives Group, a service of MIT Medical, has met to support the spouses and partners of students, postdocs, visiting faculty and other members of the MIT community, especially those who are living in the United States for the first time.
"Today the Wives Group has more than 400 members who receive our monthly newsletter, belong to an interest group or attend our weekly meetings and activities," Ms. Barton said. "The group is designed to offset the social isolation and culture shock that spouses can experience here at MIT. Being a Wives Group member can help spouses to pursue their professional interests, find a friend and an activity that they enjoy."
For more information, contact Jennifer Recklet, MIT Wives Group secretary, at firstname.lastname@example.org or x3-1614.
A version of this article appeared in the January 27, 1999 issue of MIT Tech Talk (Volume 43, Number 17).