5th Annual Reading Frederick Douglass Together Community Reading + Discussion in Egleston Square

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Saturday, July 11, 2-3:30pm

Egleston Square Peace Garden, corner of Washington and School Streets

“The feeling of the nation must be quickened; the conscience of the nation must be roused; the propriety of the nation must be startled; the hypocrisy of the nation must be exposed; and its crimes against God and man must be proclaimed and denounced. “

Frederick Douglass, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?,” 1852

We invite our community to gather for a bilingual community reading and discussion in English and Spanish of Frederick Douglass’s 1852 speech,“What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”

This will be the 5th annual Reading Frederick Douglass Together event in our neighborhood. The event will be co-moderated by Anne Hernández, School Social Worker, Boston Public Schools, and Adjunct Professor, Boston College School of Social Work as well as Josué Sakata, Assistant Director of History and Social Studies for Boston Public Schools. Both have connections to Egleston Square. The reading and our conversation will open up dialogue about race, our history and context in the U.S. and the Caribbean, and what it means for us at this moment.

This powerful and moving event will kick off a series of anti-racist summer programming in our neighborhood, including deeper community conversations around police brutality, the Black Lives Matter movement, and how these issues affect us in Egleston Square. The event will include a minute of silence for all those lost to police violence.

Safely packaged refreshments from neighborhood businesses will be served. Speakers and seating will be arranged so as to promote physical distancing and COVID-19 safety. Please wear a mask and maintain at least 6 feet of distance from other attendees. Do not attend if you feel sick. Disposable masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer will be available.

About the moderators:

Anne V. Hernández was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to Boston with her family at the age of 12. She is a Boston Public Schools graduate (Boston Tech, now John D. O’Bryant) and received both her Bachelor and Master’s Degrees from Simmons University. She has spent fourteen of the last twenty years as social worker for the Boston Public Schools; most recently at Greater Egleston High School. She is also a faculty member at Boston College School of Social Work, where she serves as an advisor and professor.

Hernández says, “I am a proud Afro-Latina, a daughter, a sister, and a fierce advocate for services for my students. Most importantly, I am the mother of an intelligent and athletic 14-year-old boy, who challenges me every single day to be the best version of myself.”

Josué D. Sakata is the Assistant Director of History and Social Studies for Boston Public Schools. He joined Boston Public Schools in the fall of 2014; previously he was a Curriculum Support Specialist for Miami-Dade County Public Schools’ Education Transformation Office, where he oversaw social studies instruction and provided coaching and support to schools. Sakata holds a bachelor’s degree from Florida International University and a master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling from The Union Institute and University. He is one of the creators of Boston Public Schools’ online resource project intended to help teachers introduce the Boston busing and public school desegregation crisis of 1974 to 1988 to students.

Organized by Egleston Square Main Street, Egleston Square Neighborhood Association, and Robert Lawson Park Friends’ Group

This program is funded in part by Mass Humanities, which receives support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and is an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The event is also supported with the generous sponsorship of the Jamaica Plain Historical Society.