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Civil Rights, Women's Rights and Economic Justice in Appalachia: The Helen Matthews Lewis Story

by Whitlock,Diana Lynn last modified Mar 14, 2012 03:06 PM

Presentation on the life of Helen Matthews, sponsored by UofL's Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research, the Women's Center and the Social Change Program.

When Mar 27, 2012
from 12:00 pm to 01:00 pm
Where Filson Historical Society, 1310 S. Third Street
Contact Phone 502-635-5083.
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Dr. Helen Matthews Lewis does not just talk and write about social change, she makes social change happen.  At age 87, Lewis is a proponent for racial justice, advocate for women, pioneer of Appalachian studies, scholar, participatory researcher, poet, preacher and outstanding cook and bartender.


Social justice supporters, history lovers and those who want to know more about Appalachia are invited to participate in a free program on the life and impact of Lewis presented by Dr. Judi Jennings on Tuesday, March 27th from 12:00 to 1:00 at the Filson Historical Society, 1310 South Third Street in Louisville.


“Helen Lewis is a contemporary s-hero,” says Jennings, the Executive Director of the Kentucky Foundation for Women. Jennings co-edited a new book entitled Helen Matthews Lewis: Living Social Justice in Appalachia, recently published by the University Press of Kentucky.


The book is based on oral history interviews with Lewis and selections from a wide range of her writings, including essays, talks, poems and sermons, interspersed with recipes, her signature cocktail specialty and gardening tips.  Jennings and co-editor, Dr. Patricia Beaver of Appalachian State University, combined Lewis’s memoirs, persuasive and creative writings with short essays by more than 30 friends and colleagues to create a lively format that appeals to a wide range of readers.


Jennings’ presentation is co-sponsored by the Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research, The Women’s Center and the Social Change Program at the University of Louisville. The co-sponsors are invited to provide their perspectives on Lewis’s life and work during the discussion following the presentation. Consistent with Lewis’s commitment to life-long learning, all participants will be encouraged to listen actively, think critically and consider what Lewis’s life story means to them.


The Filson History Society requests participants to register for this event by going to their website ( HYPERLINK "" and clicking on Programs or by calling 502-635-5083.




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