Bodies, Burials, and Black Cultural Politics: African American Funerals in the Civil Rights Movement

Keith Orejel : History

Keith will be traveling to Washington D.C. to do archival research at the Library of Congress and National Archives. He will be studying funerals in the Civil Rights-Black Power Era. Scholars of the Civil Rights and Black Power Eras often focus on the institutions and individuals who fueled the creation of these social movements, while ignoring the role of culture and cultural politics in this process. Keith will attempt to study funerals as a way to look at how existing cultural rituals become transformed in periods of African American politicization. Keith hopes to look at how these rituals became involved in the process of movement building and what they reflected about African American values and worldview.