Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. & Coretta Scott King Celebration

MLK Jr and Coretta Scott King

The Faculty of Arts & Sciences hosts an annual Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. & Coretta Scott King Celebration throughout the month of February to celebrate the lives and legacies of these two pivotal and transformational leaders.  

This year’s engagements will center on MLK’s vision of Our Beloved Community and the lifelong work of Coretta Scott King as its visionary and architect. The Beloved Community foregrounds non-violent resistance to promote global fellowship among all people, in which all poverty, hunger, and homelessness have been eradicated and that all forms of discrimination, bigotry, and prejudice are eliminated. It is a time in which adversaries enter a period of reconciliation, redemption, and resolution in the spirit of friendship and goodwill.

We are grateful to the FAS Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Leadership Council for conceptualizing this celebration, and a very special thank you to our planning co-chairs, Alta Mauro, Associate Dean of Students for Inclusion and Belonging in Harvard College, and Jerome Offord, Associate University Librarian for Anti-racism. Deep thanks goes out to our full planning committee, our partners across the FAS, and the support of our leadership.

Listen to Coretta Scott King's Commencement Lecture

Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was invited by the Harvard Class of 1968 to address them on Class Day. Unbeknownst to them, and the world, Dr. King would be assassinated on April 4, 1968. In honor of her late husband, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, agreed to address the class of 1968 on Class Day. Her speech, entitled, “We May Yet Not Only Survive, We May Triumph,” was a resounding call to action.

To set the stage for the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King Celebration, faculty, students, and staff are encouraged to listen to or read the speech delivered by Mrs. King. Both iterations of the speech will inspire you, as it did the entire Harvard community, and the world, in 1968. As we celebrate Mrs. and Dr. King, their sacrifice, and commitment to create the Beloved Community, let us reflect on how we can actively engage in this work.