Monday, June 25, 2012

Crystal Lumpkins, assistant professor of journalism at KU 'gospel of good health' in women’s mass magazines

LAWRENCE — Mass magazines are one of the best ways to get health information to women, yet they remain a largely untapped medium for communicating health news and information to African-American women in particular. A University of Kansas professor has published a study showing that articles about health issues that largely affect African-American women are underreported in such magazines, especially those that contain a spiritual or religious element.

Crystal Lumpkins, assistant professor of journalism at KU, authored “Spreading the Gospel of Good Health: Assessing Mass Women’s Magazines as Communication Vehicles to Combat Health Disparities among African-Americans.” The study took a sample of four popular women’s magazines: Ms., Redbook, Good Housekeeping and Essence. Lumpkins and her co-researchers analyzed a six-month sample of each magazine. Even though research has shown the magazines are an effective way of reporting health news, there was scant coverage of health issues that affect African-American women.

Crystal Lumpkins

Crystal Lumpkins
“Diabetes, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, all of these major health issues in the African-American community were not addressed,” Lumpkins said.

All of the magazines contained stories about food, diet and exercise, but they did not follow up in reporting more detailed or related health news.

“The health stories that were most reported were on reproductive and sexual health,” Lumpkins said. “If you’re reporting that, then HIV/AIDS falls into that category as well. Seventy-five percent of African-American women are overweight. If that leads to several other health issues, those need to be reported as well.”

In the past several years, health communications scholars have considered the effect spirituality and religion have on communicating health information reported in the media, given the high rates of faith among the general and minority population in the United States. Essence, the only magazine among the four specifically targeted to an African-American audience, was the only one shown to use spiritual imagery and language in its health articles. It was also the only magazine in the sample to contain news on HIV/AIDS, even though it was very little.

Lumpkins’ research examines how spirituality and religious factors influence individuals’ health behavior. She also examines how religious imagery and language affects individuals’ likelihood to take part in preventive health care, such as getting screenings. One of her previous studies showed that African-American women shown advertisements about breast cancer awareness preferred those with a religious component over those without.

The findings of her latest study suggest a largely untapped method for health communicators to reach minority populations with their message, Lumpkins said. Individuals tasked with getting news about health issues out to the public could potentially do well to target women’s magazines in combination with social media as a means to achieve that goal. Those dealing with health issues that tend to afflict minority populations especially have an opportunity.

It is poignant to reach minority populations, African-American women especially, due to the high incidence of certain health problems in the community. For example, African-American women account for more than 50 percent of all cases of HIV/AIDS in the United States, and the rates of new cases are 15 times higher than those of white women.

“I hope people understand magazines are an important vehicle for health communication, not just to African-American women, but women in general,” Lumpkins said. “Yes, they’re traditional, but they’ve proven to be effective. I think health communicators should truly consider them as a way to reach these important populations.”

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus. | (785) 864-3256 | 1314 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045 Contact KU The University of Kansas Lawrence, Kansas 66045 (785) 864-2700

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Tammy Kernodle Musical Crossroads at the National Museum of African American History and Culture

Miami University's Tammy Kernodle is part of a select group of experts determining the content for a historical music exhibit at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, now under construction in Washington, D.C. The museum is scheduled to open in 2015.

Kernodle, professor of musicology, is one of several scholars researching items that will be part of “Musical Crossroads,” one of the museum’s inaugural, permanent, exhibitions. “Musical Crossroads” will feature 12 exhibits that will attempt to contextualize the history and development of African American music. In addition to content, the scholars are constructing the texts that will accompany exhibits.

“What we are trying to do is as much as possible try to represent, in twelve separate exhibits, the breadth and diversity of African American music from the early traditions of the 17th century to today,” Kernodle said.

Tammy KernodleKernodle, who began teaching at Miami in 1997, spent this spring semester at the University of Kansas as the Langston Hughes Visiting Professor in the American studies program. She is writing a book that chronicles the work of black women musicians in framing protest music from the period of 1954 through 1976.

The museum will be the 19th included in the Smithsonian consortium and will document the history of African Americans from their arrival in 1619 until present.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Binding Wounds, Pushing Boundaries: African Americans in Civil War Medicine

More than 650,000 Americans died of disease or were killed in battle during the Civil War that lasted from 1861-1865. More might have died if not for the skills of African- American surgeons and nurses.

The Bruce T. Halle Library at Eastern Michigan University honors African-American medical personnel in its new exhibit, "Binding Wounds, Pushing Boundaries: African Americans in Civil War Medicine," which runs through June 23, on EMU's main campus in Ypsilanti. The exhibit is free and open to the public during library hours.

Developed by the National Library of Medicine, the exhibit explores the roles of African-American men and women, both free and formerly enslaved, who provided medical care to black soldiers and civilians.

The exhibit was very moving, says Eastern Michigan professor Heather Neff, an expert in African-American literature.

"It was a wonderful exhibit," Neff said. "I never knew this information."

Binding Wounds, Pushing BoundariesThe six panels, with period documents and historic images, bring a voice to those who have remained silent for nearly 150 years, said Elizabeth Bucciarelli, EMU's health sciences and medical librarian, who arranged for the exhibit to travel to Eastern.

Complementing the display are replicas of several Civil War flags, including an early yellow flag symbolizing a hospital site, and a 7th Michigan Cavalry regimental guidon (pronounced guy dun) that belonged to Gen. George Custer's Michigan Calvary Brigade from Grand Rapids.

A guidon is a smaller notched flag used to mark the location of military units.

Said Bucciarelli, "The library staff also has selected a series of books that provide more in-depth information about the contributions of black medical staff. These are available for check-out."

There were only 13 African American doctors in the union army and not many people are aware of these physicians' contribution to the war effort, she says.

Among the soldiers and nurses featured are:

Alexander T. Augusta who served from 1863 - 65. A free-born citizen from Norfolk, Virginia, he attended medical school in Canada. August became the first African-American surgeon-in-charge at the Contraband Hospital in Washington, D.C., which served former slaves.

Ann Stokes, a former slave, was hired as a nurse and worked under the director of nurses aboard the USS Red Rover. Stokes was the first African-American woman to serve on board a U.S. military hospital and the only one to draw a Navy pension.

John Van Surly De Grasse, was the only African American physician to serve on the field with his regiment, the 35th U.S. Colored Infantry. De Grasse was one of only two black physicians to receive a commission.

The traditional display is supplemented by a web site that contains information for teachers; the history of civil war medicine; African Americans who fought in the war; and a look at the flags on display.

The traveling exhibit was developed and produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, with assistance from The Historical Society of Washington D.C.

by Pamela Young, Published June 04, 2012 Contact: Pamela Young 734.487.4400 Eastern Michigan University Education First Ypsilanti, MI, USA 48197 University Information: 734.487.1849

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Preston Jackson sculpture unveiling will precede the 9th annual Juneteenth Conference and Festival

Preston Jackson sculpture unveiling will precede the 9th annual Juneteenth Conference and Festival

The community is invited to attend the unveiling of a new sculpture commissioned by the College of Lake County’s Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art in commemoration of Lake County’s role in the Underground Railroad. The unveiling will occur at a ceremony on Saturday, June 16 at 11 a.m. in the lobby of the 33 N. Genesee St. building on CLC’s Lakeshore Campus in Waukegan. The event will precede the 9th annual Juneteenth Conference and Festival, which will be held from noon to 6 p.m. in the courtyard adjacent to the Lakeshore Campus.

The Preston Jackson bronze, titled “Passages to Freedom,” depicts a man, woman and child fleeing to a safe stop on the Underground Railroad. Jackson researched the subject by reading a history of Lake County’s role in the Underground Railroad written by the late James Dorsey, a CLC sociology professor.

Artist Preston Jackson and a new sculpture, commissioned by the CLC Gallery of Art, will be unveiled at the Lakeshore Campus prior to Juneteenth at 11 a.m. on June 16
In 2009, Jackson exhibited his sculptures at the CLC art gallery to rave reviews, and a year ago, the work was commissioned. Funds for the project come from proceeds of sales of artwork in the gallery and the ARTcetera store. The artist, Preston Jackson, will speak after the unveiling. This event is free and open to the public. Jackson was distinguished as a 1998 Laureate of Lincoln Academy of Illinois. He is a professor of sculpture at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.

“Jackson is an amazingly prolific artist and his work is varied and wide-ranging, often examining our collective past and present in an historical and philosophical sense,” said Steve Jones, CLC art gallery curator. “We thought he was a terrific choice to create a major piece for the Lakeshore Campus, and he was very excited about doing it.”

CLC Board of Trustees Chairman Richard Anderson will preside at the unveiling ceremony.

After the unveiling, the community is invited to the 9th Annual Juneteenth Conference and Festival and the 14th Annual Back to School Festival, being held from noon to 6 p.m. on Madison Avenue (between County Street and Sheridan Road in downtown Waukegan).

Juneteenth represents the joy of freedom and is the oldest known celebration that commemorates the ending of slavery. The 9th Annual Juneteenth celebration will focus on “The Underground Railroad: Connections Through Community.” It will also celebrate African American contributions to art, education, music and dance; family; community; culture; and Lake County’s contribution to the spirit of the abolition movement. There will be inspiring speeches, food, information and merchandise vendors, main stage performances, children’s activities, the CLC history tent and more. There is no admission fee.

Juneteenth will begin with the traditional African Opening Ceremony at noon. From noon to 3 p.m., a variety of speakers will be featured. The keynote address will be given by Gloria J. Browne-Marshall, a constitutional law professor at John Jay College of the City University of New York. She is the author of “Race, Law and American Society 1607 – Present” and “The U.S. Constitution: An African American Context.” As director and founder of the Law and Policy Group, she oversees publication of the Report on the Status of Black Women and Girls®, the only ongoing national report on the state of black females in America. Browne-Marshall is also an award-winning playwright, freelance journalist and recipient of the 2009 Ida B. Wells-Barnett Justice Award.

Also appearing will be Kathryn Harris of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum portraying Harriet Tubman; Glennette Tilley Turner, author of “The Underground Railroad in Illinois;” Dr. Sandra LeConte, singing music of the underground and Rowe Niodior African Dance Company of Detroit.

Other activities include a Father of the Year Contest, Juneteenth Awards, giving out 2,000 book bags with educational supplies, Kids’ Korner with free snow cones and activities (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.), Rosalind Franklin University Community Care Connections Mobile Unit (11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.), CLC Mini Open House (1-3 p.m.), free food and the Juneteenth Marketplace and Expo (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).

For more information, call (847) 543-2191.

Juneteenth is sponsored by the Juneteenth Cultural Committee, the College of Lake County, the City of Miracles International, Trinity Universal Center, Waukegan Public Library, the Marriott, Target, Vista Health System, Waukegan Housing Authority, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Movement International, First Midwest Bank, States Attorney Mike Nerheim and others.

TEXT CREDIT: College of Lake County, 19351 West Washington Street, Grayslake, IL 60030-1198 (847) 543-2000