This So-Called Post-Post-Racial Life

February 3, 2009

No “Feel-Good” Here

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — pprscribe @ 8:12 pm

Another possible answer to the question previously posed, about what Black History Month observance would look like in a post-post-racial world:

We might observe Black History Month by talking about the problems and challenges still yet to be solved and overcome.

Like hunger, for one. That is what Angry Black Bitch is “ponderficating” about today.

Such talk does not necessarily make for a feel-good moment. Yet American ingenuity knows few bounds–surely we can figure out how to work such discussion into our 28- or 29-day Black history conversation. Perhaps, for example, McDonald’s could forgo their “Faces of Black History Month” and focus instead on programs to feed the hungry in various communities, and how McDonald’s franchisees are helping these efforts.

I do not think that “feel-good” stories are all bad. Actually, they are not bad at all, as they provide hope and inspiration and are a great source of pride. Yet there should be balance. We can include in our observance of how far we have come a view of how far we have yet to go. In addition to the balance this might provide, it might also give people a sense of agency and ideas about what they can do to move progress forward.

So to recap: so far we have these potential answers about a revamped Black History Month:

1) Avoid simple narratives in favor of more complicated discussions.

2) Include, with “feel-good” narratives, discussion of challenges and “unfinished business.”


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