Students perform original play about atrocities of slavery

Senior Chavon Mitchell compiles a series of powerful monologues taken from actual slave narratives | March 3, 2005

Students are presenting "Forgotten Souls" on Saturday, March 5, at 6:00 p.m., and on Sunday, March 6, at 7:00 p.m., in the Gallagher Student Center Theater. This event is free and open to the public.

The play—written, directed and performed by students–comprises a series of powerful monologues exposing the atrocities of slavery. Senior Chavon Mitchell compiled these monologues, taken from actual slave narratives. The performance also includes songs and interpretive dance.

“Some people ask why we didn’t schedule this for February during Black History Month,” says Mitchell. “My response is black history doesn’t have to be celebrated just one month a year—it’s important to remember all year long.”

Mitchell was inspired to compile the narratives after watching an HBO documentary titled "Unchained Memories."

“You hear about the famous slave narratives like Frederick Douglass, but not many people know that American slaves left behind one of the most extensive written accounts of their experience,” she explains. “Also, many Americans are unaware that from 1936 to 1938, over 2,300 former slaves from across the American South were interviewed by writers and journalists under the aegis of the Works Progress Administration. These slaves provided first-hand accounts of their experience and memories of slavery.”

The play is sponsored by the cultural committee of the black student association.