I’ve only been properly acknowledging Black History Month for a few years now. I figured a way for me to celebrate it would be through my reading choices, by reading literature from all genres all across the African diaspora. I was in particular thrilled to discover Henri Lopes from Congo and Jessie Redmon Fauset of the Harlem Renaissance (I didn’t review the book I discovered her in but I did find it very interesting:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/743072.Women_of_the_Harlem_Renaissance) . I was even more thrilled by the chance by Media Diversified to review the book Black Tudors by Onyeka which talked about Black Africans living in Tudor England. Through my exposure after publishing that article, I met (online) Miranda Kaufman, a British historian who has an amazing blog about black presence in British history. Miranda very kindly shared some fascinating links and info with me.
Also, I finally watched PBS’s Malcolm X documentary which I thought was really illuminating:
What I love about Black History Month is that every year I’m learning more about my heritage, I’m learning about people that school curriculums for some reason decide to omit. I think it’s clear that people from all races have contributed positively to civilization and world history and it’s a shame that we don’t see more diversity in what’s out there.
I managed to read books from Haiti, Antigua, Congo, Canada, USA and Nigeria. I’ve noticed that when it comes to Black literature I have been drawn mainly to American and Nigerian literature, I hope that will change in the future. Here is a complete list of what I read:
- Notes of a Native Son- James Baldwin (USA)
- Feminism is for Everyone- bell hooks (USA)
- Male Daughters, Female Husbands- Ifi Amadiume (Nigeria)
- Tribaliks- Henri Lopes (Congo)
- Krik? Krak!- Edwidge Danticat (Haiti)
- Selected Poems- Gwendolyn Brooks (USA)
- Annie John- Jamaica Kincaid (Antigua)
- Twelve Years a Slave- Solomon Northrup (USA)
- I Love Myself When I’m Laughing (And Then Again When I’m Looking Mean and Impressive)- Zora Neale Hurston (USA)
- Breath, Eyes, Memory- Edwidge Danticat (Haiti)
- The Great Black North (Contemporary African-Canadian Poetry)- Valerie Mason-John and Kevan Anthony Cameron (Canada)
Next month is women’s month so I hope to read more books by women authors.