ASU Book Group: ‘My Life with Charles Billups and Martin Luther King’ by Renee Billups Baker and Keith Miller
The ASU Book Group's October 2019 reading selection is "My Life with Charles Billups and Martin Luther King: Trauma and the Civil Rights Movement" by Renee Billups Baker and Keith Miller. The book group is open to all in the ASU community and meets monthly from noon–1 p.m. in the Piper Writers House on ASU's Tempe campus. Haven't read the book? Come anyway! Authors are always present. A no-host luncheon follows at the University Club.
Charles Billups displayed pivotal leadership during the climax of the entire civil rights movement — Martin Luther King's campaign in Birmingham. But little of Billups' story has been told. Until now. In this book, Billups' daughter, Rene Billups Baker, relates his torture by the Ku Klux Klan. For the first time, she reveals his participation in King's key strategy sessions at the Gaston Motel. More fully than anyone else, Rene records her father's courageous direction of a march that serves as one of the peak moments of American nonviolence.
The book is available from amazon.com
Keith Miller is professor of English in writing, rhetorics and literacies at ASU.
The ASU Book Group meetings and selections for 2019-2020 are:
- Sep. 18 – Rebecca Fish Ewan, “By the Forces of Gravity”
- Oct. 23 – Keith Miller and Renee Billups Baker, “My Life with Charles Billups and Martin Luther King”
- Nov. 20 – Eduardo Obregón Pagán, “Valley of the Guns”
- Dec. 11 – Shahla Talebi, “Ghosts of Revolution” (new date)
- Jan. 29 – Gary L. Stuart, “Call Him Mac” (new date)
- Feb. 26 – Adrienne Celt, “Invitation to a Bonfire” (tentative)
- Mar. 25 – Joey Eschrich and Clark A. Miller, “The Weight of Light”
- Apr. 29 – Kelly deVos, “Fat Girl on a Plane”
The ASU Book Group is sponsored as a community outreach initiative by the Department of English and organized in partnership with the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing.