Talking About Race in the Post-Obama Era
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Maureen Cavanaugh : The roots of Black History Month stretch back to the 1920's, and now every February arts and educational organizations across the nation celebrate the past achievements of African Americans.
The idea behind the special recognition is that black Americans had been left out of the history books. Like women of all races, the accomplishments, inventions, and contributions of African-Americans were rendered largely anonymous until scholars and academics unearthed the true history of blacks in America.
That history now includes the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States. And Obama's election has opened up questions? When does black history become a fully acknowledged part of American history? Has that day arrived? And when it does, can we say there's no longer a need for Black History Month?
- Shirley Weber , chair and professor of Africana Studies at San Diego State University.
- Sara Clarke Kaplan , professor of Ethnic Studies and Gender Studies at UC, San Diego.
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