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A Conversation between Martha Jones and Leslie Harris

Jones and Harris discuss Jones's book Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All

A Conversation between Martha Jones and Leslie Harris

On April 21, 2021, the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities hosted Leslie Harris in conversation with Martha Jones on Jones’s groundbreaking book Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All. In Vanguard, Jones offers a new history of African American women’s political lives in America. She recounts how they defied both racism and sexism to fight for the ballot, as well as how they wielded what political power they obtained to secure the equality and dignity of all persons. From the earliest days of the republic to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and beyond, Jones excavates the lives and work of Black women who formed the vanguard of women’s rights activism and called on America to realize its best ideals.

This event is part of Who Gets to Vote? Conversations on Voting Rights in America, a program of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities intended to build public understanding of the complicated history of voting rights in the United States. Who Gets to Vote? is part of the “Why It Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation” initiative administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.