Lives in the Law | Devery Anderson


This series brings together noted figures in the world of law – lawyers, professors, scholars, historians, journalists, and activists – to join in dialogue about law and its significance, past and present. Join us for a conversation with Devery Anderson, author of Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelled the Civil Rights Movement. Ronald Collins, a retired law professor and the Library’s first Distinguished Lecturer, will host the session, which is meant for laypersons and specialists alike.

It is often said the modern civil rights movement began in 1955 with the brutal murder of 14-year old Emmett Till and the subsequent acquittal of the two white men who murdered him. No work better captures the Emmet Till story – from beginning to end and beyond – than Anderson’s comprehensive Emmett Till. The book inspired the January 2022 six-and-a-half-hour ABC TV series, Women of the Movement. Anderson spent three weeks on location last March in Sumner, Mississippi, where he played one of the twelve jurors in the murder trial scenes filmed for this series.

Devery Anderson earned a BA in history from the University of Utah and a Master’s in publishing from George Washington University. He is the editor or co-editor of four books related to Mormons and the West, two of which won the Steven F. Christensen Award for Best Documentary from the Mormon History Association in 2006. His forthcoming book, A Slow, Calculated Lynching: The Story of Clyde Kennard, will be published next fall. He is the marketing manager for Signature Books, a scholarly publishing house in Salt Lake City, Utah, and is the father of three children and the grandfather of two.

Ronald Collins is the former Harold S. Shefelman scholar at the University of Washington Law School. He served as a Supreme Court fellow for Chief Justice Warren Burger. He is the editor of the weekly blog First Amendment News and is on the editorial board of SCOTUSblog. He is also the co-chair of The First Amendment Salons and the co-director of the History Book Festival. He is the author of some dozen books. He has taught a class on the Emmett Till tragedy three times, the first of which was offered under the auspices of the Lewes Public Library. His next book, Tragedy on Trial, is on the Emmett Till murder trial and its aftermath.  

We invite you to support the author by purchasing a copy of the book from our local independent bookstore, Browseabout Books, by clicking HERE. Call-in orders are accepted or you can stop by the store to purchase a copy. For store hours, please visit their website. Each copy purchased comes with a signed archival bookplate.

NOTE: this meeting is being conducted through Zoom. You MUST REGISTER to receive instructions for joining the meeting.

If you have need assistance with registration or getting your Zoom invitation, please email us.

Basic written instructions for using Zoom may be found here and a brief video tutorial may be found here. Closed captioning is available for all our sessions. Information on enabling closed captioning in Zoom may be found here.

This is an online event. Event URL will be sent via registration email.

Event date: 
Tuesday, February 8, 2022 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm
Event address: 
Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971