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Blog Posts by Subject: African American Studies

Black Lives Black Motorists

Within our contemporary climate of #BlackLivesMatter, The Green Book guides deserve continued discussion of their value as not only a practical travel resource for their time, but also as a survival guide. Read More ›

J. Rosamond Johnson and "Lift Every Voice"

The National Museum of African American History & Culture opens on September 24, 2016. The Smithsonian has decided to name the celebration “Lift Every Voice,” borrowing the phrase from the song known as America’s Black National Anthem.Read More ›

Small Islands, Big Carnival: West Indians in the USA

West Indian immigrants form the largest Black immigrant group in the city and most likely nationwide, though they represent individually small nations. This weekend the collective will come together to throw the biggest party in our city.Read More ›

Evaluating the Struggle for Equality and Civil Rights in the U.S. with the NAACP Papers

The NAACP Papers—an archival collection of approximately two million historical documents from NAACP national, legal and branch offices—are now available online to researchers onsite at the Schomburg Center, and NYPL's other research and branch libraries, as well as remotely.Read More ›

The Northeasterners Inc. Records

The Northeasterners was founded as a social organization for African-American women in 1930 by Agatha Scott Davis (d. 2002), the wife of Brigadier General Benjamin O. Davis, Jr.  

Agatha Davis was inspired to form this club after visiting African-American debutantes in different northeastern cities. She felt their similar interests would be met in a club.  Davis would serve one term in office from 1929 to 1931.

Membership is by invitation only. Resumes for entree 

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Subjects of the King: Bourbon Royalism and the Origins of the Haitian Revolution, 1763-1804

Jesús Ruiz, Ph.D Candidate at Tulane University and Short-Term Research Fellow at the Schomburg Center, writes about his first ever visit to the Schomburg Center's Manuscripts, Archives, and Rare Books Division, and his elation over discovering rare gems in our collections.Read More ›

The Library as a Space of Access: Research Q&A with Schomburg Librarian Michael Perry

Kiani Ned, Schomburg Center Communications Intern, writes about the importance of libraries and talks to librarian Michael Perry about the best research practices.Read More ›

Black Aesthetics: Revisiting 'From Dapper to Dope' and Considering Black Style Traditions

To centralize the experiences and creative worlds of black people in portraits, paintings, literature, and poetry is to engage in black aesthetics. Black aesthetics extend, too, to fashion and personal style.Read More ›

On Black Aesthetics: The Black Arts Movement

BAM had its roots in the northeastern United States, but spread quickly to the south and the west coast with the transnational movements and communal exchange of artists like Amiri Baraka, Sonia Sanchez, Askia Touré, and Ntozake Shange. Literary groups such as Umbra Workshop of Manhattan and

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A Reading List for America

A reading list in response to recent events and to help foster literacy of the American Black experience. Read More ›

Black Dance at the Schomburg: A Visual History

The language of dance as told by black people through photographs in our Digital Collections.Read More ›

Black Dance at the Schomburg: The Black Iris Project

On July 14 The Black Iris Project will perform Madiba—a dance piece based on the life and legacy of humanitarian and anti-apartheid activist, Nelson “Madiba” Mandela. The performance is set to an original score by black classical composer Carman Moore.Read More ›

Honoring Arturo Schomburg's Afro-Latino Legacy

As a young boy in Puerto Rico, Schomburg was told that black people lacked culture or history. This was a comment that he would never forget. It contributed to Schomburg’s decision to devote his life to sourcing and collecting black history.Read More ›

Live From the Reading Room: Ada "Bricktop" Smith to Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong

Today’s episode features a letter from jazz singer, dancer, and nightclub owner Ada Smith, jazz trumpeter, composer, singer, and "auto-archivist" Louis Armstrong.Read More ›

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 ›

Celebrating Miriam Makeba on the 56th Anniversary of Her Iconic Debut Album

Often called Harry Belafonte’s protégé or Mama Africa, today is the 56th anniversary of South African singer/songwriter Miriam Makeba’s debut album.Read More ›
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