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Posts from the Schomburg General Research and Reference Division

Playwright Pays Homage To Legendary MCs With Play Cycle

Shaun Neblett, aka MC SNEB, is a playwright, educator, and founder of Changing Perceptions Theater. Read More ›

Scholarship Behind "Ghetto, The Invention of a Place, the History of an Idea"

A list of primary sources at the heart of Ghetto, The Invention of a Place, the History of an Idea, by Dr. Mitchell DuneierRead More ›

Remembering Activist Paul Robeson

Alicia Perez, Communications Pre-Professional at the Schomburg Center, reflects on the lasting influence of activist Paul Robeson on his birthday.Read More ›

African Americans on Broadway Then and Now

The 2015-2016 Broadway theater season is being hailed as one of the most diverse on record. Is this slate of shows featuring African Americans on Broadway unprecedented? Let’s look take a look back into American theater history to approximately 70 years ago.Read More ›

Black Women Artists: Augusta Savage

Katherine Ellington, a New York City medical humanities scholar and researcher, discusses the work and legacy of legendary artist Augusta Savage.Read More ›

Telling Claudette Colvin's Important Civil Rights Story

Erika Paul, Pre-Professional in our Jean Blackwell Hutson Research and Reference Division, reflects on the significance of Civil Rights pioneer Claudette Colvin through a new display—sixty years after her courageous yet understated act.Read More ›

Meet the Schomburg's Newest Archivists!

Our newest archivists, Tiana Taliep and Alexsandra Mitchell, tell us what it’s like to research and preserve some of the finest materials across the African Diaspora, and their journey to the Schomburg Center.Read More ›

Ta-Nehisi Coates's Reading List

"Folks who are not familiar with black literature, read this book and read a ton of other books." The following are all the books recommended by Ta-Nehisi Coates during his mesmerizing talk at the Schomburg Center.Read More ›

New York City's Slave Market

On June 27, a plaque marking the site of New York City's main 18th-century slave market was unveiled in Lower Manhattan by Mayor Bill de Blasio. Read More ›

The Internet Loves Digital Collections: April 2015

What was the most viewed image on NYPL's Digital Collections platform in April 2015?Read More ›

Schomburg Treasures: The Green Book

The full text of the Schomburg Center's collection of The Green Book is now available on NYPL's Digital Collections site.Read More ›

Black Life Matters Feature of the Week: Telling the Stories of the Black Experience to Children

In our final exhibition feature, Maira Liriano, Curator of our Jean Blackwell Hutson Research and Reference Division, discusses the importance of diverse literature, especially for young readers of color.Read More ›

Classroom Connections: 'Little Lionhearts,' Young People in African-American Civil Rights Protests (Gr. 6-8)

"I could not move because history had me glued to the seat. It felt like Sojourner Truth's hands were pushing down on one shoulder, and Harriet Tubman's hand pushing down on another shoulder" —Claudette Colvin (Interview on Democracy Now, March 2013)

As we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, and when we typically consider the 

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Música Soul: The Soundtrack of the Black Power Movement in Brazil

"If we had said 'Negro power' nobody would get scared. Everybody would support it. If we said power for colored people, everybody would be for that, but it is the word 'black' that bothers people in this country, and that's their problem, not mine." —Stokely Carmichael (Kwame Ture) at UC Berkeley, 1966

Stokely Carmichael by Lynn B. PadweBlack Rio Scene by Almir VeigaJames Brown released "I'm Black and I'm Proud" during the height of the Black Power Movement in the United States in 1968. Brown's in-your-face approach to racial pride resonated 

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Nikky Finney Wins National Book Award in Poetry

On November 16, Nikky Finney received the 2011 National Book Award in Poetry for her book Head Off & Split. Political, sensual, historical, imaginative, Finney’s poems speak of struggle, beauty, love, and race with passion and tenderness. The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, where she has been teaching for several years, congratulates her on her wonderful 

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Remembering Ken Saro-Wiwa

“The writer cannot be a mere storyteller; he cannot be a mere teacher; he cannot merely X-ray society’s weaknesses, its ills, its perils. He or she must be actively involved shaping its present and its future.”

Nigerian environmentalist, author, and television producer Ken Saro-Wiwa lived and died by the words above. Born on October 10, 1941, Kenule “Ken” Beeson Saro Wiwa was an Ogoni (an ethnic minority in Nigeria). Ogoniland, located in the Niger Delta, is rich in oil that has been looted by 

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Finding a Life at The New York Public Library

This last week of October, 2011 is Magic Week. Perhaps it's a good time to tell this true story about how I found a life at The New York Public Library:

In the spring of 1923, my grandfather, a magician, disappeared. This well practiced man of magic had pulled off his greatest trick of all. He was never seen again — at least not by my family. His love for the circus could not hold him to a small town, a young wife, and a three-year-old son. He left, and the memory of him was put aside. Occasionally my grandmother would 

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