CORVALLIS - Rapper, activist and author Sister Souljah will speak on "Blacks and Education" at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 8, at Oregon State University's LaSells Stewart Center.

Souljah's talk, which is free and open to the public, is being sponsored by OSU's Black Student Union as part of the university's celebration of Black History Month.

Her talk will focus on contemporary issues facing African-Americans in this country.

Born Lisa Williamson in the Bronx in 1964, Souljah's autobiographical book "No Disrespect," was published in 1995. The book offers a look at growing up as an African-American female in the inner city and explores the relationships between African-American women and men, African-Americans and the church, guns, drugs and "Black nationalism."

A fiction work, also focused on contemporary African-American issues, "The Coldest Winter Ever," is scheduled for release in April.

Souljah writes that by the age of 4, her parents were divorced and Souljah was living in a crime-ridden inner-city housing project.

Eventually, she attended Rutgers University and began building a career as an orator and activist.

A one-time associate of the rap group Public Enemy, Souljah urges her audiences to focus on intellect, self-respect and spirituality.

She came to national notoriety in 1992, when scolded publicly by presidential candidate Bill Clinton for allegedly racist remarks that appeared in Souljah's Washington Post interview promoting her album, "360 Degrees of Power."

She has toured the nation, focusing her talks on overcoming teenage pregnancy, fatherless households and crime and poverty in African-American communities.

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Paul James, 541-737-9032