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Gloria PurvisSeptember 21, 2021
Photo by Iñaki del Olmo via Unsplash.

Stepping outside of our own particular worldview to encounter another person’s story can be scary—but the classics can help. They are a collection of texts from the ancient world, particularly Greece and Rome, that cross cultural borders and reveal stories of our common humanity.

Today, however, the classics can be polarizing, often claimed or misrepresented as primarily a history of white, European identity and accomplishment. Dr. Anika Prather pushes back on this prevailing narrative this week on “The Gloria Purvis Podcast.” A lecturer in the English department at Howard University and a strong proponent of the classics, Dr. Prather argues that reading these ancient texts offers an incomparable lesson in various cultural heritages.

Gloria and Anika discuss why Frederick Douglas, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison and other great African American figures steeped themselves in the classics, looking back to the ancients for inspiration and insight in their contemporary struggles for racial and social justice.

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