The Common Good
May 2011

Audio Interview with Bernard Lafayette

by Jeannie Choi | May 2011

In 1958, Bernard Lafayette was 19 years old and a student at American Baptist College in Nashville, Tennessee, when his life changed.

In 1958, Bernard Lafayette was 19 years old and a student at American Baptist College in Nashville, Tennessee, when his life changed. Dragged to a nonviolence training session by his friend John Lewis (who later became a member of Congress), Lafayette learned the methods and techniques of nonviolent protest. These sessions catapulted Lafayette into the civil rights movement. Lafayette was arrested in the lunch counter sit-ins in Nashville, and in 1960 was one of the founding members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. After Martin Luther King Jr.'s death, Lafayette continued his long career as a practitioner and trainer of nonviolence, opening nonviolence training centers around the world. In this audio interview with Sojourners web editor Jeannie Choi, Lafayette documents his progress from a young student of nonviolence during the civil rights movement to an international nonviolence trainer, equipping agents of peace and protest throughout the world.

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