March 27, 2005
Derrick Bell, for 47 years, has worked in every aspect of civil rights – litigator, with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund from 1960 until 1965, administrator with H.E.W., and following appointment to Harvard Law School Faculty in 1969, law teacher and writer.
On April 21st at 6:00 p.m., Professor Bell will deliver this year’s George Abel and Mathilde Schwab Dreyfous Lecture at Tulane University Law School, entitled, “Learning the Untaught Lessons of Brown,” referring to the landmark Supreme Court school desegregation case, Brown versus Board of Education.
Professor Bell recently published Silent Covenants: Brown v. Board and the Quest for Racial Justice (2004), Oxford University Press. His other books include: Ethical Ambition: Living a Life of Meaning and Worth (2002), And We Are Not Saved: The Exclusive Quest for Racial Justice (1987); Faces at the Bottom of the Well: The Permanence of Racism (1992), Confronting Authority: Reflections of an Ardent Protester (1994), Gospel Choirs, Psalms of Survival in Alien Land Called Home (1996); and Afrolantica Legacies (1998). His civil rights law text Race, Racism & American Law, first published in 1973, is now in its 5th Edition (2004); and a constitutional law text, Constitutional Conflicts (1997).
The George Abel and Mathilde Schwab Dreyfous Lecture is dedicated to the study of civil liberties and human rights. It was established in 1965 to honor George Abel Dreyfous, the founder of the Louisiana Affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union and a Southern pioneer and leader in the field of civil liberties. In 2003, the title of the lecture series was changed to honor both Mr. Dreyfous and his wife, Mathilde Schwab Dreyfous, a tireless community volunteer and activist who worked closely with her husband towards an end to segregation and discrimination against African-Americans.