The Living Legend describes the social, cultural and racial transformation of Louisiana State University in Pt2.
Count Time Podcast Living Legend Dr. Thomas J Durant
Dr. Thomas J Durant, Professor Emeritus, Louisiana State University discusses his journey growing up in north Louisiana under a segregated system. He describes the tools given to him by his parents that took him around the world.
Selected quotes and notes from Count Time Podcast with LD Azobra Interview with Dr. Thomas J Durant
Good evening. Good evening. Good evening it’s 4:00 PM. Stand up it’s count time, time for every man and woman to stand up and be counted. Welcome to another edition of Count Time podcast. I am brother LD Azobra formerly named Lyman white. Thank you for joining us today.
Today, we have very special guest. Very special to me in more ways than you can imagine. This young man I met many, many years ago. And over the years, we have fostered a great relationship. He’s my confidant. He’ll get a chance to share his story today. And I’ve been waiting for this for quite some time myself. I got here. Former LSU Professor Doctor Thomas Durant. Welcome to Count time, doctor.
Thank you. I was about to say, Lyman, but your transition name is L.D. Azobra. Thank you, brother LD AZobra. And I have a special name, too, other than my plantation name, which was Thomas James Durant, Jr. And that name is Kwami Orley Diacqua. I need to explain that to you in the country of Ghana, you have a special name. And according to the day of the week that I was born on.
So for me, my first name would be Kwame born on Tuesday. And O’Reilly was given to me by a family in Kampala, Uganda. And they said, I look like the Motoro people. And the Motoro people represent a large ethnic or tribal group in Uganda. And I asked him, what does O’Reilly mean? They said, O’Reilly means the rainbow, the strength, the brilliance and the color of The rainbow.
Now, the Diaqua was the chief of a village in Ghana. And we visited there in he gave me the name of the DiAqua.
The chief of the village gave you his name.
Yes. And that’s an honor name of their ancestors of the village of Diacqua. So I found a new selfrevelation in Ghana, had to go all the way to Ghana to really find out who I was from an African perspective, from an American perspective, my name is just an identity as part of my family. But in Ghana, your name is your identity that reflects part of your culture and your personality. So what people see in you and your talents and gifts that you have becomes an expression of who you are. And this is how they come up with your name. So I’m proud to say I know your name means light. My name means strength of the rainbow. Born on a Tuesday, born on Tuesday and also the honor of the village of the DiAqua, because apparently, I have some chief traits.
So you ask people who am I, who do you say you are? That’s what’s important. People can call you something by your official name. But do they really know who you are? And do you really know who you are?