About Listening to the Still Small Voice:
The Story of George Washington Carver

“Listening to the Still Small Voice: The Story of George Washington Carver,” is a one-person play written and performed by Chautauqua Scholar Paxton J. Williams, MSc, MPP. Following extensive research at the Iowa State University archives and the G.W. Carver National Monument in Diamond, Mo, “Listening…” was first performed as Paxton’s undergraduate capstone project in the Honors Program at Iowa State University.

This is the story of one of the most inspiring and enigmatic renaissance men of the 20th century. As you travel from Civil War-era Missouri, to Carver's Laboratory, to the halls of Congress, you will see the trials, tribulations, and ultimate triumph of the scientist/educator/artist known as the "Wizard of Tuskegee." You will learn how Dr. Carver, born into slavery, affected and was affected by such historical figures as Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt, Booker T. Washington, Henry Ford, Henry Wallace, the boll weevil, Thomas Edison, Will Rogers, Joe Louis, Josef Stalin, and Mahatma Gandhi. Above all, you will see the story of a humble, spirited man who did the best he could to serve humanity, and “fill the poor man’s empty dinner pail.” This performance will certainly show that there is more to Dr. Carver than his 300+ uses for the peanut!

The performance runs approximately 50 minutes in the one-act format and 90 minutes in the two-act format, including a brief question and answer period. Shorter performances can be arranged if preferred. In addition to performing for community groups, fundraisers, festivals, and academic conferences, Paxton has adapted the play for elementary school audiences, making each performance unique and interactive.

Further, organizations in need of keynote presentations might also consider Paxton's “How to Educate and Motivate the Dr. Carver Way,” perfect for educators, executives, managers, and all who seek to achieve synergy within their own organizational structures; or "On Mentoring: A Chain Reaction; or On the Peanut, Power, and Progress," showcasing the difference one person can make in the life of another person and society writ large, focusing on relationships similar to those embodied by Carver, Henry Wallace, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Dr. Norman Borlaug.

Schools and youth programs in need of programming might consider having their youth spend “A Day in the Laboratory with Dr. George Washington Carver,” where attendees join Dr. Carver in his laboratory. Together, they conduct experiments, such as cross-pollinating plants; explore how Carver’s childhood on the Carver Homestead and his hobbies influenced his work; and define and explore the idea of creativity and discovery. Students also learn the process by which Carver achieved his goals, and learn to apply that process to their own lives. In this interactive performance, Dr. Carver also addresses the importance of acceptance, self-esteem, and education.

George Washington Carver was certainly a man ahead of his times, and a man for our and all times. This performance aims to show you why, and to encourage the growth of the George Washington Carvers within us all.

Contact Info

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