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“From Slavery to the Sorbonne: Digitizing a Lifetime of Activism – The Anna Julia Cooper Papers.”

This collaboration between Howard University and Penn State University will support the digitizing of the Anna Julia Cooper Papers held at the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center (MSRC) at Howard University in Washington, DC.  The digitized files will be made available through the Digital Howard website and selected items will be featured in an online exhibition. This project will serve as the foundation for a larger multi-institution effort to create a digital repository and resource documenting the complex and extended forms of black women’s activism, focusing specifically on black women’s intellectual and activist work in the late nineteenth century, in what is known as the Black Women’s Club Movement. Because of the degree to which Anna Julia Cooper’s story is representative of a great many other of her contemporaries in the movement, digitizing the Anna Julia Cooper Papers serves as the ideal starting point from which to lay the foundation for the larger project.  This first step will help make Cooper’s work accessible to a global audience of scholars and researchers and will lay the foundation for the construction of a more robust picture of nineteenth century black women’s publishing and ongoing intellectual and activist work.  The project team includes Shirley Moody-Turner, principal investigator (Penn State University); Adrena Ifill, (DoubleBack Global Group); Joellen El Bashir (Howard University Libraries and MSRC); Lopez D. Matthews (Howard University Libraries and MSRC); and Kathryn Gines (Penn State University).