Ohio Wesleyan Libraries to Screen ‘The Loving Story’ Sept. 24

Free Event Part of the National ‘Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle’ Program

20150910-LovingStoryDELAWARE, Ohio – Ohio Wesleyan University Libraries will host a free screening of the film “The Loving Story” followed by a discussion of the documentary, which tells the true story of Mildred and Richard Loving. The couple challenged Virginia’s ban on interracial marriage in 1967, resulting in the landmark Supreme Court ruling striking down such laws in 15 states.

The screening will begin at 5 p.m. Sept. 24 in the Bayley Room on the second floor of OWU’s Beeghly Library, 43 Rowland Ave., Delaware. The discussion, following at 7 p.m., will be guided by Ashley Biser, associate professor of politics and government, and Chad Johns, associate chaplain.

About the Film

Mildred and Richard Loving knew it was technically illegal for them to live as a married couple in Virginia because she was of African American and Native American descent and he was white. But they never expected to be awakened in their bedroom and arrested one night in 1958. This 2011 documentary brings to life the Lovings’ marriage and the legal battle that followed through little-known filmed interviews and photographs taken for Life magazine.

About the Presenters

Ashley Biser, Ph.D., is a political theorist whose research interests are in contemporary political theory, focusing on the works of Hannah Arendt and Martin Heidegger. At Ohio Wesleyan, she teaches courses in Democracy and Its Critics; Classical Issues in Political Theory; American Political Thought; and Political Theory, Science and Technology.

Chad Johns, D.Min., joined the OWU Chaplain’s Office in 2005. His academic interests include narrative identity, Trinitarian theology, and the intersections of theology with both science and sexuality. At OWU, he serves as director of the spring break mission week program, works closely with the campus gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community, and has taught courses on the theological exploration of both speculative fiction and leadership and power.

About the Series

Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle is a special initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities, as part of its Bridging Cultures initiative, in partnership with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. The film and discussion series aims to encourage communities across the country to revisit the history of civil rights in the United States and to reflect on the ideals of freedom and equality that have helped bridge deep racial and cultural divides in American life.

The films in the Created Equal series tell a remarkable story about the importance of race in the making of American democracy; about the power of individuals to effect change; and about the historical contexts in which Americans have understood and struggled with ideas of freedom, equality and citizenship. The films address events from the 1800s through 1965. In addition to “The Loving Story,” which concludes OWU’s film series, the national program also includes “Slavery by Another Name,” “The Abolitionists,” and “Freedom Riders,” which kicked off OWU’s program in 2014.

For questions about the local events, contact Dee Peterson, coordinator of user services for Ohio Wesleyan Libraries, at 740-368-3240 or dmpeters@owu.edu.


Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers 86 undergraduate majors and competes in 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Ohio Wesleyan combines a challenging, internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities to connect classroom theory with real-world experience. OWU’s 1,750 students represent 46 U.S. states and territories and 43 countries. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the latest President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at www.owu.edu.

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