For the first time, anyone with access to the Internet can hear tapes of Robert Penn Warren’s 1964 interviews with prominent Civil Rights activists like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Malcolm X and the Rev. James Lawson. The interviews were conducted for Warren’s book “Who Speaks for the Negro?” and this project was made possible through the cooperative efforts of the Vanderbilt, Yale and University of Kentucky libraries. Mona Frederick, executive director of Vanderbilt’s Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, put this project into motion after learning that many of the tapes were stored at Yale in their original reel-to-reel form. Other tapes were being kept at the University of Kentucky for an oral history project. The digitized audio as well as transcripts for most of the interviews can be found at http://whospeaks.library.vanderbilt.edu/.
Contact: Ann Marie Deer Owens, (615) 322-NEWS