Weeks of November 22/29: Off week/ Kwanzaa at The East with Basir Mchawi

Image: Basir Mchawi. Credit: Hank Williams


Wednesday 11/22 we will not meet because of the holiday the next day. CUNY has not cancelled all classes though so check any other classes you may have scheduled.

On Wednesday 11/29, we’ll have a guest speaker, Basir Mchawi, who will do a presentation on the history of the Kwanzaa celebration at the Brooklyn-based cultural center The East, which was a strong presence in the 1970-mid 80s and were the founders of the still-running International African Arts Festival, held annually in Brooklyn over the Fourth of July weekend.

To prepare for his talk and our class session:

  • (Re)read the section on Kawaida Theory in Introduction to Black Studies (pages 260-263)
  • Read about the history of The East via this interview with the late Jitu Weusi, who was one of the founders, and this short blog post.
  • Read the Seven Principles (Nguzo Saba) on the Official Kwanzaa Website
  • Watch the following documentary on Kwanzaa via YouTube (It’s about 70 minutes long)




What to read/look for:

  • TBA

You do not need the Amsterdam News this week or for the rest of the semester. We will not be covering it.

Quick highlights from 11/15 class:

  • Coming soon


  • No class on Wednesday 11/22 for the holiday.
  • Attention education majors/ educators: See the following event on Sunday 11/19 at the John Henrik Clarke House in Harlem. All are welcome and admission is free, though they’ll ask for donations at the end of the program