Black History Month launch event celebrates resistance and healing 

A while circle laid over a colourful circle, with text that reads

Featuring music, dance and spoken word performances, a food truck and Black-owned business vendors, the Feb. 1 event is just the beginning of Black History Month at McMaster. 

February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the contributions and achievements of Black, Caribbean, and African diasporic peoples.

This year’s theme for Black History Month (BHM) at McMaster is From Continent to Diaspora: Celebrating Black Resistance.

The BHM at McMaster Committee has organized a day-long celebration to mark the beginning of Black History Month through music, spoken word and dance performances, as well as vendor booths featuring Black-owned businesses.

Starting at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 1, The Arts: Resistance and Healing launch event is open to community members in the MUSC Atrium. The event will celebrate the enduring legacy of Black individuals who stood against adversity, fostering healing and empowerment in their communities, organizers say.

Poster for Black History Month at McMaster kickoff event, featuring the title: The Arts: Healing and Resistance. Followed by information on where it is and when, and the logo for BHM at McMaster.
Click the Black History Month at McMaster poster to view it at full size.

After opening remarks by McMaster President David Farrar and a keynote speech from Vice-Provost of Equity and Inclusion Barrington Walker, the event will showcase performances that commemorate resistance and healing.

Visitors can enjoy musical performances by bobbxyz, Digital Dina, Shaykeh and AwulaNa; dancing by student groups MacAfricans and MACaws, and a spoken word performance by poet Crystal Mark, who recently joined the university as the McMaster Library’s first diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility strategist.

Vendors for the Feb. 1 event include My African Treasures, Pink Papillon Co., Kerl Beauty Bar, OæsisWithin, XUBRIANCE, Icarus Apparel & Alterations, Artbytye, Bougie Burn and Pitch Magazine, as well as a Jamaican Patty Shack food truck outside.

Campus and community groups are also participating, including the Black Student Success Centre, MacAfricans, the McMaster Association of Caribbean And West Indian Students (MACaws), African and Black Diaspora Studies (ABLD), Black Student Association (BSA), Blackspace, the Black BHSc Association, Sisters in Sync and BLKOWNED HAMONT.

BHM at McMaster organizers have also compiled a calendar of events and programming for Black History Month at McMaster and in the broader community.

Click here for the first week’s calendar (Jan. 31 – Feb. 4) and click here for the full month’s listings.

Follow BHM at Mac on Instagram for more information and to stay up to date. And if you post about Black History Month events at McMaster, don’t forget to use the hashtag #BHMMac2024.

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