Creator Of #MeToo Movement Speaks In Fayetteville

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) -- The creator of the #MeToo movement spoke in Fayetteville Thursday (March 28). Tarana Burke shared her journey in activism and how the global change grew to what it is today.

Burke came as a part of a student-sponsored distinguished lecture series at the University of Arkansas. Burke began her activism campaign in 2006 to help inspire and help girls and women who have experienced sexual harassment, abuse or assault. The #MeToo movement became viral in 2017. The committee said they selected Burke in hopes of shining light on the tough topic of sexual assault as April, the month dedicated to sexual assault awareness, approaches.

Christine Carroll is the Student Chair for the committee, and she said the topic of the lecture is important for people to hear on campus and in the community.

"It's really exciting that we are able to open this dialog more and to bring more people into the conversation," Carroll said.

Carroll said the committee aims to bring in lecturers who are experienced in topics students might not always get to learn about in the classroom. Carroll said she hoped to come away from the talk energized by Burkes activism.

"I would love to come from this lecture feeling kind of refreshed about the reason why we fight for things like #MeToo," Carroll said.

Samia Ismail is the Vice Student Chair on the Distinguished Lecture Committee, and she said she is inspired by Burke's journey in long-term activism.

"Not only has the #MeToo movement been something that's been in the news quite a lot lately, but there's been so much going on behind the scenes to get to that viral moment a couple of years ago, so we are excited to share that story of long term activism with students," Ismail said.

The Distinguished Lecture Series next hosts former first lady Laura Bush in April.  Mrs. Bush will speak Thursday, April 18.

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