Pin His Ear to the Wisdom Post: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the School of Prophets


The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who received his doctorate from the School of Theology in 1955 six months before he stepped into history as the leader of the legendary Montgomery Bus Boycott, is not merely the most celebrated graduate of Boston University; he is its quintessential alumnus, the personification of the vision its founders had in establishing the institution in 1839.

In appreciation of his edification and inspiration here, Dr. King donated his papers to Boston University in 1964, the year his stature on the global stage was confirmed in his receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize. Consisting of 83,000 items, the King collection is both one of the largest and the most frequently consulted of the more than 2,000 holdings in the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center.

This exhibit, showcasing a small fragment of the King trove, is intended to enable an appreciation of how much King, often regarded as a product of and actor in the long, hot summer of the American South's conflagration over civil rights, was, in fact, a man for all seasons, groomed for that role in his study of systematic theology at Boston University's "School of Prophets."

This exhibition is no longer on display.

Alan Cumming
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.