Frederick Douglass Institute

West Chester University

408 Francis Harvey Green Library
West Chester, Pennsylvania 19383
Phone: (610) 436-2766
Fax: (610) 436-2769

Lunch Encounters

During her first semester at West Chester University in fall 2001, Dr. tonya thames taylor (lower case is intentional) of the Department of History created the “Brown Bag Lunch Seminar Series” for the Frederick Douglass Institute. The first “Brown Bag” Series dealt with the events and commentary surrounding the al-Qaeda attacks of the World Trade Center in New York City, New York and Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia on September 11, 2001. Remarks of colleagues and students who referred to 9/11 as the first time terrorism had occurred on American soil surprised southerner and southern scholar Dr. thames taylor. Seizing the teachable moment, dr. thames taylor held a “Brown Bag” (meals brought by attendees to a lecture or presentation) Seminar to educate the community on lynching—a regular practice and habit throughout America from 1865-1968—and the spectacle, diabolical, and terrorist nature of lynching. She demonstrated that terrorism was commonplace in the lives of many black Americans throughout American History and 9/11 was the most recent attack by global agents. The program was such a success that the Frederick Douglass Institute adopted it into its regular programming.


The Brown Bag Seminars provide a forum for informed and interdisciplinary discussion of the major concerns facing global citizens. The monthly event gives speakers the opportunity to address provocative topics and to address current challenges of global development from a historic and/or contemporary perspective.


In February 2008, C. James Trotman, Director of the Frederick Douglass Institute (FDI) and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE), renamed the series to its current name. The current name pays tribute to the agency of four young men whose agitation for justice at a Woolworth Store’s lunch encounter in 1960 led to the overturning of segregation policies throughout the nation.


The FDI have hosted influential speakers at noontime before a diverse audience of the public, students, staff, faculty, and scholars in various fields. The Series has included discussions of the inequities revealed by Hurricane Katrina, the protest of Harlem Renaissance poets, teaching with respect to modern diverse families and consumerism in fashion.


The intentions of the FDI Lunch (En) Counter Lecture Series are to:

accelerate global awareness by discussing themes such as economics, business, humanity, science, social science, identity, visual and performing arts, and justice (moral/legal) that

·      impact world citizens;

·      prompt community agency;

·      hasten exchange of information and learning; and,

·      serve as a co-curricular to curricula.


March 27, 2013

Presenter: Dr. Thames Taylor

Topic: Human Trafficking, Race, and Pimping

Time: 1:00pm

Location: Anderson Hall, Room 111

All are invited to attend!!!




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 Updated August 2012