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Celebrate Black History Month With These Virtual Events | Smithsonian Voices

Selfie: Michael Oaks Archive/Getty Images; Background: Steve Taylor/Em/Getty Images; Illustration by Shailene Esposito

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Thursday 10 February

Who is considered a benefactor? A conversation about black philanthropy
Free with online registration
3 p.m. Eastern time

From Richard Allen, founder of the former enslaved African Methodist Episcopal Church, to Madame C.J. Walker, the country’s first self-made millionaire and respected teacher Nanny Helen Burroughs, museum curators and guest historians will present and discuss the historically overlooked charitable contributions to Africa. Americans. Drawing on a groundbreaking scholarship offered by Tanesha C. Ford, Ph.D. and Tyrone McKinley Freeman, Ph.D. In a discussion with curators Amanda B. Muniz, Ph.D., and Maudub Labode, Ph.D., the program will examine the intertwined history of philanthropy, business, and social justice. The program will also contain questions and answers with the audience.

Tuesday 1 February

Food History Wikipedia Edit-a-thon
1 p.m. Eastern time

Learn how to create and add entries to Wikipedia about black women in food history in this edit. During this training, attendees of all experience levels will learn the basics of how to edit Wikipedia by updating articles on black women in the history of food in the United States.

February 7th week

HistoryTime: Elizabeth Keckley

Our latest HistoryTime video will be released during the week of February 7th and will feature the story of tailor, businesswoman and philanthropist Elizabeth Keckley. We’ll use Keckley’s story and examples of her work as a parody of Mary Todd Lincoln. HistoryTime videos are designed for children ages 5-8 and the adults in their lives.

Wednesday February 9

Creative Life: Nathaniel Mattis
4 p.m. Eastern time

The 2022 series of Innovative Lives kicks off during Black History Month with Nathaniel “The Bush Doctor” Mathis, inventor, barber and winner of international hairdressing competitions. Matisse popularized afros and cornrows, hairstyles synonymous with black identity and empowerment. He also patented several useful tools for barbers, including a custom apron and utility rack. This discussion will be moderated by Opening Coordinator Davis Rovins.

Tuesday 22 February

Bakers Against Racism: The Power of Community Activism Through Food with Guest Chef Paola Velez
Free with online registration
Virtual cooking demonstration at 6:45pm ET

Chef Paula Velez, co-founder of Bakers Against Racism, will share a recipe from her home kitchen that reflects and embodies her identity as an Afro-Latino chef rooted in her family’s Dominican heritage. She will discuss her organizational efforts through Bakers Against Racism, an international movement that took off on social media in 2020, and her belief that no matter how small, every effort counts — including sales of small baked goods — in raising awareness and mobilizing support for an end to racism.

This program is free and registration will open through the Smithsonian Associates website in January.

Thursday 24 February

Podcast Edition “Collected: Re-rooting the Black Feminist Movement”

“Collected” is a new podcast from the Museum’s American Curatorial Collection, and it launches February 24. Hosted by moderators Krystal Klingenberg and Crystal Moten, the six-episode season will feature interviews with prominent black feminists including Barbara Smith, Brittney Cooper and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor. Hosts and guests will analyze core ideas of black feminism such as “intersectionality,” “self-care,” and “identity politics.” The Collection will offer scholarship and accessible social justice concepts to listeners interested in working toward a more inclusive, just society. For more details, please visit the Museum’s website for updates in February.

Thursday 24 February

Joe Wilder: Virtual Concert The Pretty Sound
7 p.m. Eastern time

American jazz drummer, conductor, composer, and NEA jazz master Joseph Benjamin Wilder (1922-2014) left a vast imprint that continues to resonate in the world of music today. Wilder has earned accolades for his performance with Count Basie and many of his great colleagues. Wilder has recorded throughout his career, starting with “Wilder ‘n’ Wilder” in 1956 to “Among Friends” in 2003.

Celebrating Wilder’s unique talents during what will be his 100th year, SJMO’s Small Band will perform songs from Wilder’s debut album, the 1959 cult classic “The Pretty Sound of Joe Wilder,” and more. This software was produced in partnership with Smithsonian Associates.


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