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Blog Posts by Subject: African American Studies

Celebrating Queer Voices in Black Music History

Housed in our vast collection of materials and resources on black LGBTQ identity, which includes the In The Life Archive, are the portrait collections of blues singers Gertrude Ma Rainey, Ethel Waters, and Bessie Smith in the Photographs and Prints Division.Read More ›

On Black Fatherhood and Muhammad Ali

Remembering Ali as a champion father figure in the black community—exemplifying strength, confidence, and a love for people around the world.Read More ›

Exploring the Literary Within the Black Power Movement

When we explore the dynamics of the Black Power Movement, we must not fail to explore the Black Arts Movement as well. It was the artistic voice that helped increase political activism and express the importance of cultural values through various art forms. Read More ›

Finding Solace and Motivation in Black Lesbian Literature

Our Communications pre-professional, Alicia Perez, takes a deeper dive into our collections and finds a gem that perfectly aligns with her current journey at this time in her professional and personal life.Read More ›

Remembering Malcolm X Through the Women Who Knew Him

Our annual celebration of the birthday of Malcolm X will be held on May 19 in collaboration with the Malcolm X Museum. The all-women panel, Women Speak About Malcolm X, is sold out, but you may still join the discussion via LiveStream.Read More ›

Schomburg Treasures: Writers' Program, New York City

Material relating to the WPA Writers' Program in New York City and the book The Negro in New York.Read More ›

The Legacy of Dick Gregory

One of the greatest benefits that a celebrity has is a platform to speak out against the injustices of society. Comedian, social activist, writer, and entrepreneur, Dick Gregory, born Gregory Richard Claxton, can be noted as doing this over the course of his life.Read More ›

Bill Gunn: An Unsung Hero of Black Filmmaking

Nora Soto, Pre-Professional in our Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division, celebrates the brilliance of filmmaker Bill Gunn, whose papers are now available in our collections.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 ›

Granville T. Woods: An Early STEM Pioneer

He registered nearly 60 patents—ranging from the development of the telephone to the multiplex telegraph.Read More ›

Live From the Reading Room: Zora Neale Hurston to 'Bill'

Today’s episode features a letter from writer, anthropologist, and folklorist, Zora Neale Hurston to her friend, “Bill.”Read 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 ›

Live From the Reading Room: Claude McKay to Walter White

Today’s episode features a letter from Jamaican-American Harlem renaissance era poet and writer Claude McKay to NAACP leader and civil rights activist, Walter White.Read More ›

James Baldwin: The Price of the Ticket

Novelist, essayist, playwright, activist, son, brother, friend, lover, man, human, Black. There are many words of which to describe a person, but never enough to describe James Baldwin.Read More ›

Live From the Reading Room: Josephine Baker to Sumio Matasuo

Live from the Reading Room: Correspondence is a podcast series that aims to share interesting and engaging letters written by or to key historical figures from the African Diaspora. Read More ›

The Schomburg Center Pre-Professionals Reflect on Their Experiences

Steven G. Fullwood, Associate Curator of Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division, interviews our current cohort of Pre-Professionals about their experiences.Read More ›

The Black Rock Coalition: Empowering Artists Who Break the Mold

In 1985 the Black Rock Coalition (BRC) was formed as an outlet for alternative Black musicians to showcase their talents.Read More ›

Why You Should Read Invisible Man

On March 1, 1914 Ralph Ellison was born. Today, we celebrate the author by reading his masterpiece Invisible Man. Here is why you should too.Read More ›

Live from the Reading Room: C.L.R. James to Constance Webb

Today’s episode features a love letter from Trinidadian social theorist, historian and political activist C.L.R. James (1901-1989) to his wife and confidant the actress, model, writer and activist Constance Webb (1918-2005). Read More ›

March Author @ the Library Programs at Mid-Manhattan

Join us for an Author @ the Library talk this March at Mid-Manhattan Library to hear distinguished non-fiction authors discuss their work and answer your questions.Read More ›
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