Tickets for the “One Book, One UIS” presentation featuring civil rights icon and U.S. Congressman John Lewis are available free of charge exclusively to the UIS campus community now through August 30th. Tickets can be reserved through the UIS Sangamon Auditorium Ticket Office in person or by calling 217-206-6160. The lecture and discussion will take place at the auditorium on Monday, October 19 at 7 p.m. with a book signing immediately following. Please present your iCard to reserve your tickets. Tickets will be available to the general public beginning Monday, August 31.
The graphic novel, MARCH, which tells Lewis’ life story as a civil rights leader, was chosen by UIS as the campus community read for the 2015-16 academic year. Lewis will be joined on stage by co-author Andrew Aydin and Illustrator Nate Powell.
Lewis has been a member of the United States House of Representatives since 1986, representing the Georgia 5th District. Born the son of sharecroppers in Pike County, Alabama, he became a civil rights activist while a student at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, organizing sit-ins and participating in freedom rides. From 1963-1966, Lewis chaired the Student Nonviolent Organizing Committee (SNCC) of which he was a founder.
The title of the book MARCH comes from the many marches that Lewis organized or participated in, including one of the most well-remembered moments in civil rights history—the march over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. Lewis was one of the organizers of the march, which drew nationwide attention when the non-violent marchers were attacked by Alabama state troopers. Many historians believe that the images of cruelty from the Selma march were a factor in the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Over the years, Lewis has received many prestigious awards, including the Medal of Freedom (the nation’s highest civilian honor) and the only John F. Kennedy “Profile in Courage” Lifetime Achievement Award ever granted by the John F. Kennedy Foundation. He was recently presented with the Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government from the University of Illinois Institute of Government and Public Affairs.