"If a race has no history, if it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated." -Dr. Carter G. Woodson
There are so many unknown facts and secrets about Black America's history that it would take a lifetime to catch up on all there is to know. Entering 5th grade, I was introduced to what was called 'American History.' Painfully dull, unbelievably forgettable, I recall dreading the time spent in that class every single day. Textbooks filled with endless paragraphs and other meticulously selected subjects designed to control the narrative and silence the knowledge. Feeling forced to absorb a history that was not of my own and instructed to learn, memorize, and recite the Pledge of Allegiance, I went along with it because it was all that I knew. 'One nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.' Indivisible human rights are described as follows; “Human rights are indivisible. Whether they relate to civil, cultural, economic, political, or social issues, human rights are inherent to the dignity of every human person. Consequently, all human rights have equal status and cannot be positioned in hierarchical order.”
Dr. Carter Godwin Woodson, distinguished Black author, editor, publisher, and historian (December 1875 - April 1950). Carter G. Woodson believed that Blacks should know their past in order to participate intelligently in the affairs in our country. He strongly believed that Black history - which others have tried so diligently to erase - is a firm foundation for young Black Americans to build on in order to become productive citizens of our society.
Known as the "Father of Black History," Carter G. Woodson holds an outstanding position in the early 20th century American history. Woodson authored numerous scholarly books on the positive contributions of Blacks to the development of America. He also published many magazine articles analyzing the contributions and role of Black Americans. He reached out to schools and the general public through the establishment of several key organizations and founded Negro History week (precursor to Black History Month). His message was that Blacks should be proud of their heritage and that other Americans should also understand it. Reference; www.naacp.org/naacp-history-carter-g-woodson/
Books By Dr. Woodson
As I continue my self-discovery journey and knowledge of the history I was forfeited as a child, I must accept that what one does not understand, one surely cannot be expected to teach. The work of Dr. Woodson brought light to the cultural purpose of Black History and the importance of sharing that History within the Black communities and the entire world. Knowledge is vital. Learn more of this amazingly dynamic force in the history of Black America.
*Video courtesy of YouTube.
"Learning to accept insult, to compromise on principle, to mislead your fellow man, or to betray your people, is to lose your soul." -Dr. Carter G. Woodson.
AJ writes & blogs from her home in Atlanta, GA. You can also find her work as a contributing writer at www.groovmagazine.com
"This is how you do it; you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it's done. It's that easy, and that hard." -Neil Gaiman