Life and work of Hodgson to be celebrated
The life and work of a veteran campaigner for civil rights is to be celebrated tomorrow.
Eva Hodgson will be honoured in the annual Dr Kenneth E. Robinson/Cyril Outerbridge Packwood Memorial lecture.
Meredith Ebbin, one of the organisers, said that Dr Hodgson was well known as an equal rights campaigner, but that she had made her mark on island life in other ways as well.
Ms Ebbin explained: “She is a race advocate but she is much more than that. She was a geography teacher at Berkeley Institute, earned a PhD in African history and African-American history and headed an oral history project in Bermuda for the Ministry of Education.
“She founded an anti-racism organisation called the National Organisation for Reconciliation, was president of the Bermuda Union of Teachers and was appointed an OBE in 2011 for her commitment to addressing racial inequality.”
The event, to be held at the Bermuda Industrial Union headquarters on Hamilton’s Union Square, will start with a film about Dr Hodgson by Milton Raposo of Method Media, followed by an interview with her by Ms Ebbin.
“The lecture honours the contribution of two eminent Bermudian historians,” said Ms Ebbin, a member of the Bermudian Heartbeats Committee, which organises the Bermudian Heartbeat lecture series.
“Presenting A Conversation with Dr Eva Hodgson is fitting because of her work as a teacher, activist, historian and author.
“Like Dr Robinson and Cyril Packwood, she has written about events in which black Bermudians played leading roles.
“Like Dr Robinson and Cyril Packwood, she filled gaps in the record that had long been overlooked, even neglected.”
Ms Ebbin highlighted Dr Hodgson’s book, Second-Class Citizens; First-Class Men.
She said: “That covered a pivotal period in Bermuda’s political history — the period between 1953 and 1963.
“That period ended with the vote given to people who were not property owners.”
Dr Hodgson said: “A feature of my life has been addressing the racial divide and, looking at the recent census, we haven’t really made much progress in that regard.
“This government should be thinking in terms of pushing unabashedly affirmative-action policies.”
She added: “Our government needs to have courage, determination and true commitment.
“I have very cautious optimism.”
The event, which starts at 6pm, is free and light refreshments will be served.
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