A daughter of Jesse Owens, the African-American runner who dominated the 1936 Berlin Olympics, will speak at the opening of "Nazi Olympics: Berlin 1936," the Illinois Holocaust Museum's new special exhibition.
On Feb. 21, Marlene Owens Rankin will join exhibition curator Susan Bachrach and Ralph Metcalf, Jr., the son of Ralph Metcalfe, the African-American runner who took second place to Owens during those same Olympics and who later went on to serve as a U.S. Congressman for Illinois in the 1970s. Jason Marck, producer and director of "The Morning Shift" on WBEZ-FM, will moderate the discussion.
On loan from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the exhibition features historical photographs, film and athlete testimonies highlighting both Adolf Hitler's exploitation of the 1936 Olympics to promote Nazi ideals of racial supremacy and those athletes who were barred from the games because of their ethnic heritage.
The exhibition opens just days after "Race," a feature-length film about Jesse Owens directed by Stephen Hopkins. (Watch the film's trailer, below.)
Additional related events include a Feb. 28 screening of "Olympic Pride, American Prejudice," a new documentary which looks at 18 of the African-American athletes who represented the U.S. during the 1936 Olympics.
The panel discussion takes place 2-3:30 p.m. Feb. 21. Registration is $12; free for members. For ticket information, visit the Illinois Holocaust Museum's website.
The exhibition "Nazi Olympics: Berlin 1936" continues through Aug. 28.