'Black Water Rising' Author Keynotes Panel on Integration at UH

Novelist Attica Locke Will be Joined on Panel by Former NBA Star, Recent Mayoral Candidate

The University of Houston (UH) will host award-winning author Attica Locke as the keynote speaker for, “Revolution on Cullen. The Personal Challenges of Integrating UH in the 1960s,” at 4 p.m., Monday, Oct. 1 at the Rockwell Pavilion, M.D. Anderson Library.  The event is free and open to the public.Attica Locke

According to Paula Woods in a Los Angeles Times book review, “’Black Water Rising,’ was inspired by an actual incident involving young Attica and her father, a former radical turned attorney. But what she makes of it has put her in the company of master thriller writers such as Dennis Lehane or Scott Turow. ‘Black Water Rising’ is a near-perfect balance of trenchant social commentary, rich characterizations and an action-oriented plot that, after it kicks in, moves rapidly toward some explosive revelations well-suited to the growth-crazed Houston that Locke so accurately evokes.”

Locke will discuss her novel, “Black Water Rising,” which reflects on the tensions of student life at UH in the 1960s and will read from her newly released novel, “The Cutting Season.”  Former NBA player, coach and commentator Don Chaney, and Gene Locke, an activist, attorney and recent mayoral candidate, will discuss their experiences as part of the first cohorts of African-American students at UH. Alison Leland, interim director of community affairs at UH, will moderate the panel.

This public symposium will explore the integration of the UH campus and civil rights activism in Houston through the eyes of two students who were at the forefront of the change and through the eyes of a novelist looking back at this time of rapid social and political change in Houston and the wider society. UH admitted its first black student in 1962.

This event is co-sponsored by the UH political science department, African-American studies, The Center for Public History and the Phronesis Program in Politics and Ethics. 


“Revolution on Cullen. The Personal Challenges of Integrating UH in the 1960s” 

Keynote address, “The Paradox of Progress: Honoring Our History in the Face of Change,” by award-winning author Attica Locke of “Black Water Rising” and “The Cutting Season”   

UH Alumni Panel, “Integration and Student Radicalism at UH. View from the Inside,” includes: Don Chaney, former NB

A player, coach and commentator; Gene Locke, activist, attorney and recent mayoral candidate; father of Attica Locke; and moderator Alison Leland, interim director of community affairs, UH.


4 – 7 p.m., Monday, Oct. 1

4 p.m. UH Alumni Panel

5:30 p.m. Keynote Address

A reception follows. Copies of “Black Water Rising” and “The Cutting Season” will be available for sale at the reception.


Free and open to the public.  RSVP by Sept. 26 at 713-743-8962 or rslusby@uh.edu


University of Houston

Rockwell Pavilion, second floor of the UH M.D. Anderson Library 

Off Calhoun Road, Entrance 1 - Parking in UH Welcome Center Garage