Welcome to Black History Month! But what does that really mean? There are varying views on this month, from significant celebration to those who feel as though Black History is also American History (so why break it out?). I’m not going to talk about pros and cons of these varying ideas. Instead, I want to share what you can experience and learn locally here in Mountain View.
Back in November, I lamented on my Facebook page that there hasn’t been any activities during Black History Month in Mountain View for some time. What resulted from that statement were various friends and community leaders saying we should do something about it. So, in two months time, we rallied and planned free events around the city for all to participate in.
With help from the , , Friends of the , , and , as well as sponsorship from the Human Relations Commission, here is what we came up with:
1. A month-long multimedia display at the Mountain View Library, which features photos and items I gathered from a 2010 trip Ghana. Also, thanks to the and , there are photos and brief bios on the first African-American hires in their respective departments.
2. There is a Poetry Slam and Spoken Word event at on Friday, Feb. 17th from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Come check it out. Come perform!
3. A special documentary screening and reception at on Sunday, Feb. 19th at 2 p.m. Ni Wakati (It's Time) is an inspiring story that re-introduces Africa’s rich diversity to the rest of the world, as M1 (Dead Prez) and Umi (P.O.W.) travel to East Africa and connect with Ukoofulani Mau Mau, a revolutionary youth movement of artists in the slums of Nairobi, Kenya. Seating is limited, so RSVP to: http://blackhistoryfilmmv.eventbrite.com/
4. Another film viewing will be held at the on Sunday, Feb. 25th at 2pm. Killer of Sheep examines life in mid-1970s Los Angeles through the eyes of Stan, a sensitive dreamer who is growing detached and numb from the psychic toll of working at a slaughterhouse. Frustrated by money problems, he finds respite in moments of simple beauty: the warmth of a coffee cup, slow dancing with his wife, holding his daughter. The film offers no solutions; it merely presents life-- sometimes hauntingly bleak, sometimes filled with transcendent joy and gentle humor.
So drop by the library and/or attend one of the other events happening this month and celebrate Black history.