Posted on: Monday, February 20th, 2023
Every February, the people of Canada come together to honour all African American and Canadians from the times of slavery, to the present day. It is a time to think back and reflect upon the hardships faced by people of colour.
In 1915, historian Carter. G Woodson co-founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in response to the lack of data and acknowledgment given to the achievements of black people that are presented to the public. Then, in 1926, to acknowledge the contribution of African Americans and Canadians, it was announced that the second week of February was Negro history week. This week was chosen because of the birthdays of Frederick Douglass, an abolitionist focused on ending the practice of slavery, and Abraham Lincoln, a former United States president who led the United States during the civil war. After the creation of Black History Week, many parts of the public started to support and recognize the movement. Finally, in 1976, United States president Gerald Ford extended the week-long event to “honour the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black citizens in every area of endeavour throughout our history.” Since then, Black history month has been celebrated every February in the United States and Canada.
Many other countries have joined the United States and Canada in celebrating the societal contributions of black people, their history and culture, and their struggles of acceptance in our society. These countries include Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. To this day, Black history month continues to bring light to the contributions of black people throughout history. Some ways our society is doing this include museum exhibits, documentaries, film screenings, talk shows and an encouragement of increased study of black history. As of 2023, the theme for Black History Month is “Ours to tell.” The theme represents a chance to take part in open dialogue and encourages us to learn more about what our Black communities in Canada have to share.
Follow the link below to learn more.