Excerpt Description: Carol McDonald argues that the Black cultural center movement was about creating a space that could benefit all students through the lens of examining Black culture and history.
Interviewee Name: Carol McDonald
Interviewer: Charlotte Fryar
Excerpt Transcript: “I think in one broad sense we tried to very much say that this wasn’t just about this building or even just black folks, but, at the same time, we were very much working together and in parallel with the movement for wages for the housekeepers and groundskeepers. I don’t know. I think we just sort of had a–we very much talked about that a building that is dedicated to black culture and black studies is very much just a lens to telling the story of our state and of America, and that it wasn’t intended to be some sort of–some isolated thing, that this is another academic building. If there’s a theater there, that is there for the entire campus. I was very into photography at the time, and I wanted a dark room. I didn’t get my dark room, [laughter] but all those services and facilities would be there for the benefit of the entire campus community, and that recognition of one group, particularly the group that was brought here and was enslaved, really then opens up the conversation about all.”
Excerpt Length: 1:19
Interview Date: 3/31/2017
Interview Location: Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Citation: Interview with Carol McDonald by Charlotte Fryar, 31 March 2017, in the Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007), Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.