One Book One Chicago: “I’ll Take You There: the Staple Singers and the Music that Shaped the Civil Rights Era”


I am reaching out to ask if you are teaching a course in the spring semester that could connect to some exciting programming being developed for the spring semester. This is in collaboration with the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs for its annual One Book One Chicago program. This year’s book is I’ll Take You There: the Staple Singers, and the Music that Shaped the Civil Rights Era by Greg Kot.   The current plan is to hold three events that will take place at Roosevelt University. For example, one event will be held in February in celebration of Black History Month, and will include a panel of faculty and students discussing the Civil Rights Movement, accompanied by performances by students from CCPA.

This partnership and topic is an opportunity to hold up our social justice mission and the distinctive strengths in our areas of study across the university. Please reach out to discuss further who we might reach out to in the community to join us in this effort and how we can incorporate an Experiential Learning component in your spring course that might fit within the following themes:

  • Music (old and new) that inspires social change
  • music of the Civil Rights Movement
  • music that preserves history
  • organizing and activism
  • message-oriented music
  • mobilization of social movements
  • racial politics and music

We are truly in the brainstorming phase of this project.  If you have thoughts, ideas or would like to participate in the planning, please contact me at or 312-341-2150.

Nancy Michaels, Director, Experiential Learning

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