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Philosopher Derrick Darby to Speak at UAlbany's 27th Annual Martin Luther King Jr./Black History Month Luncheon

AudioCast Available Listen to an AudioCast of the address (.mp3 file)

Contact: Catherine Herman (518) 437-4980

ALBANY, N.Y. (February 1, 2006) -- Derrick Darby, associate professor of philosophy and humanities at Texas A&M University in College Station, will be the keynote speaker at the 27th annual Martin Luther King Jr./Black History Month luncheon at the University at Albany. The event, sponsored by the division of student success and university auxiliary services, will be held on Thursday, February 9, 2006, at noon in the Campus Center Ballroom and is free and open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis. Darby will speak on "Bridging the Gap: Philosophy, Politics, and the Hip-Hop Generation."

Born in the South Bronx and raised in New York City's Queensbridge Housing Projects, Darby graduated from Martin Luther King Jr. High School in Manhattan. He received his bachelor's degree in philosophy from Colgate University and his doctorate in philosophy from the University of Pittsburgh. Darby's areas of research and teaching include social and political philosophy, ethics, and African American philosophy with a focus on questions concerning the nature and value of rights.

His most recent publication is Hip Hop & Philosophy: Rhyme 2 Reason (Open Court Publishing, 2005), a volume of philosophical essays co-edited with Tommie Shelby (Harvard University), and with a foreword by Cornel West (Princeton University). Darby's book challenges the assumption that there is an unbridgeable gap between street knowledge and book knowledge, and challenges academia to demonstrate the virtues of a liberal arts education for an increasingly diverse student body that views itself as part of the hip-hop generation.

UAlbany's Department of Africana Studies is also sponsoring several events that are free and open to the public to celebrate Black History Month. For additional information on the following events, contact Leonard A. Slade Jr., chair, Department of Africana Studies at (518) 442-4726.

Wednesday, Feb. 1, at 1:30 p.m., in Humanities 039

UAlbany's distinguished service professor Shirley Jones will discuss "Remembering Africa."

Wednesday, Feb. 15, at 1:30 p.m., in Humanities 039

Professor Lucy Ann Hurston from Manchester Community College, CT, will present "Remembering My Aunt Zora Neale Hurston."

Thursday, Feb. 16, at 4 p.m., in the Assembly Hall Campus Center

The New York State Writer's Institute and UAlbany's Department of Africana Studies present "Tips for Writing Poetry" by Professor Honoree Jeffers from the University of Oklahoma.

Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 7 p.m., in the Recital Hall Performing Arts Center

The Martin Luther King Jr., Choir, conducted by Elgin Taylor, will present "A Celebration of Black Music."

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