Honorary degrees for Freedom Riders
In 1961, 14 black students from Tennessee State University took part in the famed Freedom Rides, which sought to integrate public facilities and challenge Jim Crow laws in the South. White racists beat and jailed the students in Mississippi. But instead of recognizing their bravery, their own historically black alma mater expelled them. Last week, in an emotional ceremony, TSU reversed itself and bestowed honorary degrees on the 10 surviving Freedom Riders and their four deceased classmates. “All of this is just so fantastic,” said one of the recipients, Pauline Knight-Ofosu. “I don’t know how I can stand it.”
Mozart's new score
A previously unknown score by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart has turned up in a library in Nantes, France. The signed but incomplete piece, consisting of several bars of melody, is thought to be a draft of some church music that Mozart wrote around 1787. Though catalogued in the 1800s, it was forgotten for more than a century. “It’s really important because a totally new piece by Mozart does not show up every year,” said Ulrich Leisinger of the International Mozart Foundation in Salzburg, Austria, who authenticated the document. “There have been fewer than 10 discoveries in the past 50 years. An entirely new piece like this is very rare.”
113 years old and counting
Tomoji Tanabe of Japan, believed to be the world’s oldest man, has just celebrated his 113th birthday. Tanabe, a former city land surveyor, received gifts and flowers from well-wishers, as well as $1,000 in cash from the mayor of his hometown of Miyakonojo, on Japan’s southern island of Kyushu. Every day, Tanabe rises early, reads the newspaper, eats regular meals, and drinks milk in the afternoon; he avoids cigarettes and alcohol. On his birthday last year, Tanabe said he wanted to live “for infinity.” This year he said he’d be happy with “another five years or so.”
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