State News

Oct 25, 2013 9:05 AM

Wiley Travels To USC For Rematch Of 1935 Debate

MARSHALL - Debaters from Texas' Wiley College have traveled to California for a rematch of a 1935 debate that served as inspiration for the movie "The Great Debaters."

The exhibition debate is set for Friday evening on the University of Southern California campus. In the 1935 debate, students from Wiley, a small, historically black school, prevailed over USC, a nationally known powerhouse, at a time when the U.S. was heavily segregated. The 2007 movie climaxes with a fictional debate against Harvard that was modeled on the real match in California.

Last year, USC traveled to Wiley's campus in the small East Texas town of Marshall for an exhibition debate.

Wiley had ceased to have a debate team by the time movie rekindled interest and the team was resurrected in 2008.

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