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Ella Baker and the Black Freedom Movement: A Radical Democratic Vision

The guide provides information on the 2021 Book Club entitled "Ella Baker and the Black Freedom Movement: A Radical Democratic Vision" by Barbara Ransby.

Speaker Biographies for Feb 22


ShaRhonda Knott Dawson Bio (Speaker #1)

ShaRhonda Knott Dawson is a social justice and disability advocate who has been actively involved in activism, neighborhood clean-up and organizing, civil engagement, and community work since elementary school. With over 20 years of professional experience in nonprofit program management and 24 years as a political and community organizer, she focuses on engaging youth and people of color. 

ShaRhonda received her undergraduate degree from the Jacob Carruthers’ School of Inner-City Studies at Northeastern Illinois University with a concentration in the study of Western Civilization through an Afro-centric lens and her master’s degree from The University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration, with an emphasis on management and public policy. Though she is a columnist for Education Post, she publishes in different venues, including academic, scholarly, popular, literary, and webzines where she continues her activism by her critical reflection and analysis of the Socio-Political Realities and social justice themes such as politics, education, religion, immigration reform, racism, sexism, heterosexism, and homelessness. As a disabled Black woman raised in inner-city Chicago, in everything she does, ShaRhonda strives to eliminate all forms of oppression that negatively impact marginalized, minoritized, and disabled people. 

Culturally, philosophically, spiritually, and politically, ShaRhonda identifies as a radical Black woman with strong ties to her African female ancestors and her faith, unafraid to speak the truth about the isms, racism, and sexism, and is greatly influenced by the writings, activism, and life of Ms. Ida Barnett Wells. Her publications include titles such as Reading the Right Books, Not Just the White Books, Will Help Black Students Succeed; Fighting for Justice Still Kills Black People; White Allies, Do Your Share, Teaching Black History to My Daughter; and What Happened to Serena Williams at the U.S. Open Happens to Black Girls in School Every Day.” And most recently, a co-edited article with her mom, titled “The Pandemic Within Systemic Injustice: Intersectional Cultural Dimensions of Women’s Aging, Health, and Case Stories of COVID 19.

​ShaRhonda currently resides in the west suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two wonderful, strong-willed girls. She and her activist husband Brian are the co-founders of BRONDIHOUSE, LLC. 

Speaker #2 Nesrine Chahine

Nesrine Chahine specializes in modern Arabic literature in its global relations to European and Afro-Asian cultural histories. Her book project, Marketplaces of the Modern, examines representations of Egypt as a marketplace in texts by twentieth-century Egyptian and Anglophone authors, arguing that unresolved narrative tensions over the commodification of laboring bodies, cultural artifacts, and raw goods reflect the troubled history of metropolitan influence in twentieth-century Egypt. The project engages debates on transnationalism and globalization by emphasizing the necessity of recuperating the material dimensions of culture. Her translation of selections from Ahmad Shawqi's Death of Cleopatra has appeared in the Norton Critical Edition of Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, and her article, "Peter Abrahams and the Bandung Era: Afro-Asian Routes of Connection," was published in Critical Arts. She is currently in negotiations with the American University of Beirut Press for the publication of a trilingual volume in an anthology series on Lotus, the journal of the Afro-Asian Writer's Union.

Breakout Zoom Information for Session 2-TTU

Zoom Directions


Thank you for attending this Book Read virtually. The conference will be hosted on the Zoom meetings platforms, with each link providing you the room for each event. Below you will find the steps to log onto the Zoom platform for the conference and the login information.


· Click on the corresponding link for each session. Each session has a different link that you will want to click on at each session's start.


· Passwords should not be required if you click on the link provided to you.



· Please make sure your mic is muted, and your camera is off at the beginning of the session. If not, the host will turn off the camera and the mic.


· Sessions will end on time. The Opening, Greetings, and Keynote session will be 40 minutes, the Small Group Discussion session will be 10-15 minutes, and approximately 10 minutes for the Questions and Answers and Closing session. Questions and answers will be housed in the chat function and filtered by the moderator.


· Speakers will join the session five minutes before the session begins to test the technology and presentations. Attendees will be let into the session at the scheduled start time.