CCI Faculty Member Speaks at Inaugural Emmett Till Archives Lecture

CCI School of Communication Faculty member Dr. Davis Houck recently spoke at the inaugural Emmett Till Archives Lecture on December 2nd, 2021.  

Dr. Houck was joined by Keith Beauchamp and Devery Anderson, two of the nation’s leading experts on Emmett Till’s life and legacy. The lecture welcomed over eighty attendees, both in-person and online. The conversation between Houck, Beauchamp, and Anderson centered around the very different treatment of the case by white and black Americans – more specifically, the lasting legacy of the Emmett Till case on black news media.  

The experts featured at the event offer a wealth of insight into Till’s life. Beauchamp recently co-wrote the upcoming biographical film “Till,” which is slated for release in 2022. Anderson published the novel Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelled the Civil Rights Movement in 2015. The work is being adapted into a miniseries coming to ABC and Hulu in January. Both contributors have also published collections of their research to the public, which includes interviews, newspapers, magazine articles, and notes.  

“Keith and Devery are eager and generous collaborators. We’ve been working with each other for more than 15 years, so it felt like second nature to have the audience eavesdrop on our conversation,” said Dr. Houck. “Since both have films coming out this year, it was very interesting to learn more about how such a film gets made, and what stories get told.”  

In addition to educating the FSU community about the importance of this case, the lecture was intended to increase awareness of the Emmett Till Archives here at Florida State. The archives were created by Dr. Houck himself in order to educate and enhance understanding about who Emmett Till was. Houck is also a co-creator of the Emmett Till Memory Project, a digital guide that serves as a tribute to Till’s life and legacy. As interest in the case increases due to media coverage like books and movies, resources like these are more important than ever. “Having the archive up and running, and many documents digitized, is a career highlight, to be sure; it represents the work and commitment of countless people,” said Houck.  

To read more about the lecture, click here