What is Black History Month?

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Black History Month is kicking off in a couple days! The celebration starts on February 1st until the end of the month. Black History Month also known as African-American History Month in the US Or is an annual observance in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and in the Netherlands (from 2016) where it is known as Black Achievement Month. It began as a way for remembering important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. It is celebrated annually in Canada and in the USA in February, as well as in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands in October.

The Origins

The origins of Black History Month lay in early 20th-century historian Carter G. Woodson’s desire to spotlight the accomplishments of African Americans. Mainstream historians left out African Americans from the narrative of American history up until the 1960s, and Woodson worked his entire career to correct this blinding oversight.

Negro History Week

In 1915, Woodson helped found the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (today known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History or ASALH). The idea for an organization devoted to black history came to Woodson as he was discussing the release of the racist film The Birth of a Nation. Discussing it with a group of African-American men at a YMCA in Chicago, Woodson convinced the group that African Americans needed an organization that would strive for a balanced history.

Birth of Black History Month

African Americans quickly took up Negro History Week, and by the 1960s, at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, American educators, both white and black, were observing Negro History Week. At the same time, mainstream historians had begun to expand the American historical narrative to include African Americans (as well as women and other previously ignored groups). In 1976, as the US was celebrating its bicentennial, the ASALH expanded the traditional week-long celebration of African-American history to a month, and Black History Month was born.

Black History Month in Canada

Even though Black History month started in the USA. Black history month is also celebrate in Canada in the remembrance of the role of Black Canadians in the Canadian historic landscape.

People of African descent have been a part of shaping Canada’s heritage and identity since the arrival of Mathieu Da Costa, a navigator and interpreter, whose presence in Canada dates back to the early 1600s.

Few Canadians are aware of the fact that African people were once enslaved in the territory that is now Canada, or of how those who fought enslavement helped to lay the foundation of Canada’s diverse and inclusive society. As in the USA, Black history Month is celebrated annually in February.

 

Black History Month 2018 at LaPolyglotte

What should you expect?
LaPolyglotte will definitely join the celebration this year sharing more information on LaPolyglotte’s Instagram  , twitter and much more!

Don’t miss out our two Facebook Lives:

Febraury 7 with Michael from Litéya ya Lingala Is Lingala the new English?

February 12 with Pablo Blanco and Afro Latino Culture

 

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