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Angela Davis on Black History

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

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Written by Denise Martins

In this section of her lecture in the University of Guelph, Angela Davis talked about the interconnectedness of struggles worldwide:

While it's true that black history month summons us to reflect on the contributions of black people to our present societies. The most consequential meaning of black history month is its focus on the struggle for freedom, the history of the struggle for freedom. And this is not only black freedom but it is freedom for all beings who suffer from any of the wide-ranging forms of subjugation we have witnessed on this planet. So our celebration of black history month can thus focus on the meaning of the black struggle for freedom for other people of colour for people struggling for freedom in other regions of the world and I want to point very specifically to the Palestinian people today who have recently engaged in actions that recapitulate the struggle for black freedom in the U.S. You've heard about the freedom riders in Palestine, right? They were inspired by the freedom riders in the south. So we'll talk about that later but the point that I'm making is that our celebration of black history month can focus on the relevance of the black radical tradition and the black struggle for freedom for people all over the planet: for members of LGBT communities, for women of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, for working class people, for people with physical and mental disabilities. We can also think about the implications of the black struggle for freedom for our current efforts to save the environment for the many generations that will hopefully follow us: for generations of both human and non-human beings.

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