This program will give attendees an opportunity to participate in a facilitated dialogue about contemporary relationships between Black Americans and Africans. African and Black American panelists will provide brief historical and sociological overviews and share personal stories.
For many Black people in the United States and around the world, the 2018 blockbuster movie, Black Panther, was a watershed moment. Seldom had Hollywood portrayed Black people, particularly women, in such positive and empowering ways. Blacks flocked to movie theaters in record numbers not only to see themselves on the silver screen, but also to be seen. Many moviegoers wore African garments and Black Power memorabilia from the 1960’s. This seemed to be Black Hollywood’s “Barack Obama” moment.
Black Panther removed the scab from a centuries-long wound between Black Americans and Africans. Perhaps unknowingly, the movie’s lead characters, and first cousins, T’Challa and Killmonger, brought the relevancy and pain of this wound into relief. Since the movie opened last February, Black people around the country have engaged in conversations about the elusive relationship between Africans born and raised on the African Continent, and those born and raised in the Diaspora–particularly, the United States.