News & Information

Should We Still Celebrate Black History Month?

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Mar 1, 2017
  • 8:55

Guest: Dr. Eddie Chambers, Phd, Professor African Diaspora Art History, University of Texas, Austin We’ve come to the end of Black History Month. February was first designated as such in the 1970s, but the commemoration actually dates back to 1926 when an historian named Carter Woodson declared the second week of February “Negro History Week” – that was the language of the time – to coincide with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. There’s a perennial debate this time of year over whether or not Black History Month is still a good idea. Do we really need one month designated for mulling over the history of one race? And why confine it to just one month when African Americans are so central to US history? Plus, America elected a black president twice. So can we just call Black History “American history” at this point?