Bellarmine News

One Sunday in Mississippi


One Sunday in Mississippi is a play by English Professor Linda Bannister and her late partner, James E. Hurd Jr. Marymount Institute’s Harriet Tubman Press has published the play and will host a book launch featuring a performance of selected scenes on Feb. 28, 2018 from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. in the Marymount Institute.

In the summer of 1964, hundreds of student volunteers came down from the North and Midwest into Mississippi to build freedom schools and register Negro voters. They wanted to insure that every Mississippian had civil rights; they hoped to loosen the iron grip of racism fostered by an entrenched and growing Ku Klux Klan. The federal government was reluctant to interfere in States’ business, and when these workers went south, they had only their zeal and non-violent resistance to protect them. One Sunday in Mississippi, three workers, one black, two white, disappeared in the field in Neshoba County, Mississippi.

Exploring facts and fictions of the Civil Rights Movement, One Sunday in Mississippi reflects the political and emotional timbre of the time, and probes the nature of racism. Based on interviews with surviving relatives and friends of James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, and Andrew Goodman, Bannister and Hurd  piece together differing points of view to tell the story of the three slain workers on Sunday, June 21, 1964, their last day on earth.

Bannister has been a valuable member of the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts faculty for 35 years and will retire this semester. LMU This Week recently caught up with Bannister and discussed her recent work as well as the evolution of the journalism program at LMU. You can read the complete Q&A here.