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  • Nicole J. Burton

We Shall Overcome Warring Narratives


I tried to find a Saturday morning 12-step meeting but Google maps doesn't speak "Jackson" and I ended up in abandoned lots so I went straight to the new Mississippi Civil Rights Museum where I spent much of the day. Housed in a new wing of the "Two Mississippi Museums" building, it's still a warring narrative of black and white here. The other Mississippi History Museum, is about prehistoric culture, Indians, riverboats, cotton, lumber, and the Civil War, and contains one chaste case devoted to the Civil Rights Movement. The new museum is excellent but a lot of reading and while I stood and read and soaked in as much as I could, recordings of singing, snarling dogs, and mean men yelling reverberated through the exhibition halls. Six civil rights museums in four days, no wonder I'm feeling a bit clubbed. Tomorrow I'll go to church. In the gift shop, I found some of my favorite books in residence: Spies of Mississippi by my friend Rick Bowers, about Mississippi's extensive surveillance network; Wednesdays in Mississippi by Debbie Z. Harwell, and Strategic Sisterhood by Rebecca Tuuri, whom I'll meet in Hattiesburg later this week.


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