Charlotte, NC– Johnson C. Smith University has published Let There be Light: Exploring How Charlotte’s Historic West End Is Shaping a New South, a ground-breaking anthology featuring essays written by some of Charlotte’s most prominent scholars, journalists, and civic leaders including: JCSU President Dr. Ronald Carter, Tom Hanchett, historian of the Levine Museum of the New South, Robin Emmons, founder of Sow Much Good, and Mary Newsom, journalist and associate director for UNC Charlotte’s Urban and Regional Affairs.
The 167-page anthology illuminates a range of controversial issues surrounding Charlotte’s historic west end, home of the nearly 150-year-old Johnson C. Smith University.
Let There Be Light invites readers into a new era of civic engagement by capturing many of Charlotte’s most spirited conversations, whether inside the Tuesday Morning Breakfast Forum, the racially-heated Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board meetings, or the gentrifying neighborhoods on the city’s west side. Edited by award-winning journalist and author Ron Stodghill, the work is a bold anthology that traverses the community’s historical triumphs while pointing the way to its future.
Let There Be Light, developed under the auspices of Smith Institute for Applied Research, articulates JCSU President Ronald L. Carter’s unfolding vision to revitalize one of Charlotte’s long-neglected communities. “. . . I see this volume as merely the initial effort in a multi-volume series,” writes Dr. Ronald Carter in the book’s foreword. “I also see this and future books a recording of the present so that future generations can understand the social, political, and economic factors that shaped their community and their lives.”
Its title inspired by the university’s Latin motto, Sit Lux, Let There Be Light kicks-off a series of round table discussions on several of the book’s topics, including: neighborhood gentrification, nutritional disparities, education, and public health.
The book was launched on September 12, 2014 and the very next day, the university hosted the 4th Annual Indaba which kicked-off a community roundtable series that addresses issues raised in the anthology with a focus on action. Let There Be Light is available at the JCSU bookstore in hardcopy and in Kindle, Nook, and iPad formats.
updated November 7, 2014
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