Driving While Black:  Race, Space and Mobility in America

Screening and Lecture with Gretchen Sullivan Sorin, Ph.D.

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David Rockefeller Creative Arts Center at Pocantico

Tickets: $15 (+$1.75 ticketing fee)

Historian and author Gretchen Sullivan Sorin, award-winning author of Driving While Black: African American Travel and the Road to Civil Rights will give a lecture and present film clips from her book’s subsequent award-winning PBS documentary, Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America.

Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America explores how the advent of the automobile brought new mobility and freedom to African Americans while also exposing them to discrimination and deadly violence along American highways, a history that still resonates today. The film, at once harrowing and inspiring, traces the story of African Americans on the road from the early 1900s, to the seismic changes of the 1960s, to the present challenges of "driving while Black." Both a riveting history and a personal story, the program explores realities that have been an indelible part of the African American experience for hundreds of years. Join us for a deeply compelling exploration of the film as well as Sorin’s award-winning book that unravels layers of the experience of African Americans on the road.

The event will be followed by a reception with special access to the DR Center gallery, currently showing Portraits of Process.

The snow date for this event is February 8, 2024.

Gretchen Sullivan Sorin

Gretchen Sullivan Sorin is director and distinguished service professor at the Cooperstown Graduate Program, a training program for museum curators and directors within the State University of New York. Sorin is the author of Driving While Black: African American Travel and the Road to Civil Rights, a finalist for the NAACP’s 2021 Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work. She was co-writer and senior historian with Steeplechase Films on the documentary film, Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility, recipient of the 2021 American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Award.