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Norris Community-Physics (April 2010)

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Shannon Carter

on 31 January 2011

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Transcript of Norris Community-Physics (April 2010)

Commerce, Texas The Norris Community William H. Mayo
Texas A&M-Commerce Mt. Moriah Temple Baptist Church
Founded 1986 Norris School William L. Mayo brings East
Texas State Normal College
to Commerce, Texas Henry C. Riley establishes
Mt. Moriah Temple Baptist Church 1896 1964 Commerce ISD and
Texas A&M-Commerce
integrate 1889 Because We Live Here: Why the Local Matters
to Historians, Archivists,
and Rhetoricians Shannon Carter, PhD
Associate Professor of English

James Conrad, PhD
Director, Special Collections (retired)

Texas A&M-Commerce April 22, 2010 Norris Community Club
Established 1975 Norris Community
Club established in 1975
to provide, according to
NCC founder Billy Reed,
"a direct line of
between city
governance and its
African American citizens http://www.vimeo.com/9715210 Before San Jose State, before raising his gloved fist in a
salute to Black Power and Unity at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico
City, John Carlos would travel from his home in Harlem to East
Texas where he would spend one controversial year running track
at a regional, comprehensive university that had integrated but a few years before (in 1964). On that medal stand he was joined by yet another San Jose student with East Texas connections: Tommie Smith, who spent the first ten years of his life working the Texas soil in his large family of sharecroppers. Carlos attended ETSU from 1966-1967. In his award-winning study Because We Live Here (2007), activist and literacy scholar Eli Goldblatt urges teachers and researchers to get beyond the classroom, laboratories, and libraries--into the world and, increasingly, onto the local scene. Together, Carter and Conrad respond to this call by attending to the translocal through the Norris Community. Existing within the Commerce City limits since the 1890s, the Norris Community was home to the vast majority of Commerce's African-American population for much of the 20th century. Similar communities existed throughout the segregated south until Jim Crow laws and customs gave way to integration in the last half of the 20th century. The current presentation describes this local context from three perspectives: (1) a rhetorician studying text use and production among members of one activist group organizing for local change in the decade following state-mandated integration (Norris Community Club, established in 1975), (2) a university archivist collecting and preserving local African American history, and (3) faculty leading a research center (Converging Literacies Center) in exploring emerging technologies and providing opportunities for graduate student involvement in these and other research and community-outreach projects. To attend to the "translocal" requires participants to put local issues in global contexts (and the global in local contexts), thus Carter and Conrad will devote a portion of their presentation to disciplinary implications--especially in terms research and preservation methods.
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