The World House Project, Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Vision of a More Just and Peaceful Future, Launches at FSI

Led by Clayborne Carson, the new project works to realize King's vision of the world as a large house in which "we must learn somehow to live with each other in peace.”
Staff of The World House Project on the stairs of Encina Hall
Staff of The World House Project sit on the stairs of Encina Hall.

On October 1, 2021, Dr. Clayborne Carson and his team hosted an open house to officially inaugurate The World House Project and its new office located at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI).

The new project, which builds on the work of the Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford, notably the King Papers Project and the Liberation Curriculum, develops innovative and authoritative educational resources. The project’s goal is to make these resources freely available to all peoples of the world to illuminate the past, speak to the present, and empower them to build a more just and peaceful future. 

“The idea of using nonviolent means to achieve human rights is one of the central ideas that we have to get across,” said Dr. Carson, director of The World House Project, to the faculty, staff and community members in attendance at the launch event. “But that’s not going to mean very much in the world unless we find ways of making that strategically effective. That’s what we’re here to do.”

Dr. Carson is the Martin Luther King, Jr. Centennial Professor Emeritus at FSI. He has been a member of the Stanford Department of History and director of the King Papers Project, as well as the author of numerous books and articles about the King legacy. 

Selected in 1985 by Mrs. Coretta Scott King to edit and publish the papers of her late husband, Dr. Carson has devoted most of his professional life to the study of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the movements King inspired. 

"We're delighted that you're here as part of the institution at Stanford that is at the nexus of studying international issues," said FSI Director Michael McFaul to Dr. Carson and those gathered in the project’s new space in Encina Hall. “I think of this 'house' and your initiative as part of the redefinition of how we think about international studies at Stanford.”

In addition to offering educational resources, The World House Project is also home to The World House Global Network, which facilitates communication and collaboration among people working on local and global levels for peace and justice. The network aims to build solidarity and grow the sense of community among all people defending human rights nonviolently and realize King's vision of peaceful coexistence. 

“The World House Project is about growing a global network who have been inspired by Dr. King’s vision of a world house,” said Johnny Mack, the project’s associate director. “There’s no one else doing this, and we do have an unprecedented opportunity and organization to carry out that vision.”  

In his remarks to attendees, Dr. Carson encouraged the community to see the project’s new space as their own.

“This World House is your World House,” said Dr. Carson. “You are all welcome here anytime.”

Dr. Clayborne Carson

Dr. Clayborne Carson

MLK, Jr. Centennial Professor Emeritus, History
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