In Conversation with Samuel Freedman and Book Signing | Celebrating Hubert Humphrey’s Civil Rights Legacy

Humphrey School of Public Affairs
September 28, 2023 - 6:00 pm CDT
- 8:00 pm
Humphrey School

Join the Humphrey School of Public Affairs and UMN Libraries on September 28, 2023, at 6 p.m. at the Humphrey School for an engaging book talk with author Sam Freedman. Celebrating the 75th anniversary of Hubert H. Humphrey’s civil rights speech, Freedman and moderator Kirsten Delegard will discuss how Humphrey’s experiences influenced his political triumph.

The event is being held in-person and virtually and open to the public, but registration will be required. 


Through his latest work, renowned author Sam Freedman leads a captivating journey. Published 75 years after that pivotal 1948 speech, Into the Bright Sunshine examines the politician’s early career, when his efforts to promote racial justice not only transformed the Democratic Party but the nation as well. Freedman explores the journey of Humphrey’s life from a remote, all-white hamlet in South Dakota to the mayoralty of Minneapolis as he tackles its notorious racism and anti-Semitism to his role as a national champion of multiracial democracy. His allies in that struggle include a Black newspaper publisher, a Jewish attorney, and a professor who had fled Nazi Germany. And his adversaries are the white supremacists, Christian Nationalists, and America Firsters of mid-century America—one of whom tries to assassinate him. Celebrating one of the overlooked landmarks of civil rights history, Freedman illuminates the early life and enduring legacy of the man who helped bring it about.


In this thought-provoking event, Kirsten Delegard, co-founder of the University Libraries’ Mapping Prejudice project, will serve as the esteemed moderator. She will moderate a discussion exploring the significance of Humphrey’s speech in the civil rights movement.


During the event, attendees will have the opportunity to acquire copies of “Into the Bright Sunshine” from the University of Minnesota Bookstores table on the spot, or grab it beforehand here. Additionally, Sam Freedman will hold a book signing during the reception, creating a cherished opportunity for personal connections to this momentous occasion.


About Sam Freedman


Samuel G. Freedman is an award-winning author, journalist, and educator. He has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and has won the National Jewish Book Award and the New York Public Library’s Helen Bernstein Award. His columns for the New York Times about education and religion have received national prizes. He is a professor at Columbia University, and has been named the nation’s Outstanding Journalism Educator by the Society of Professional Journalists.


About Kirsten Delegard


Kirsten Delegard is one of the co-founders of the Mapping Prejudice Project. A third-generation Minneapolitan, she trained originally as a women’s historian and explored the history of women and politics in her early research. More recently she has devoted her energy to public history and unearthing the complex past of her hometown. This focus led to Mapping Prejudice and the Historyapolis Project, which Delegard also founded. In addition to her appointment in the libraries, she holds faculty affiliations with the Department of Geography, Environment and Society and the Heritage Studies and Public History Program.


Register here


We invite you to join us as we celebrate and honor the pivotal moments that have shaped the course of our nation’s history. 


Live captioning and American Sign Language interpreters will be provided.

Contact Info
This event is hosted by the Humphrey School of Public Affairs in partnership with the University of Minnesota Libraries. Live captioning and American Sign Language interpreters will be provided. To request other accommodations, please contact hhhevent@