Social activist and 1960s radical leader Angela Davis will be donating her papers to a library of women’s history at Harvard University.

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The 74-year-old icon was a pillar of the Black Power Movement and is known for her activism around issues like mass incarceration.

“My papers reflect 50 years of involvement in activist and scholarly collaborations seeking to expand the reach of justice in the world,” Davis said in a statement. “I am very happy that at the Schlesinger Library they will join those of June Jordan, Patricia Williams, Pat Parker, and so many other women who have been advocates of social transformation.”


According to Kris Snibbe of The Harvard Gazette, Schlesinger Library has acquired Davis’ archive of documents, letters, papers and photos that trace her evolution as an activist, author, educator, and scholar.

Davis was born January 26, 1944, in segregated Birmingham, Alabama. After graduating from the University of California, San Diego, in the late 1960s, she joined several activists groups, including the Black Panthers. She later became a teacher at the University of California, Los Angeles, but lost her job because of her association with communism. She fought the university in court to get her job back but still ended up leaving when her contract expired in 1970.

Davis’ work will now be showcased to a new generation of future leaders and activist so they can build on what she has left behind.