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Events and Celebrations

Black History Month Internal Events

Adler University Black History Month Events

Adler University celebrates the achievements of Black people in the U.S. and Canada, recognizing their abilities to navigate structures that were not built for their success. We study Black history to fill gaps in our understanding of the history of our nations, which include the lives, contributions, and struggles of Black people. 

We encourage the Adler University community across campuses and the public to join us to learn, participate, and celebrate Black History Month. Join us for the many Black History Month events happening across Adler University.

Black History Month events happening across Adler University
February 9: Common Hour: The Horrors of Black Maternal Health

Common Hour: The Horrors of Black Maternal Health

Wednesday, February 9, 12-1 pm CST / 10-11 am PST

Presented by: Sharena Sigmon (she/her)

The topic of Black maternal health will be explored through a discussion about a short experimental horror film, written and directed by Sharena Sigmon, which depicts the story of a Black pregnant woman who suffers from medical complications and vicious hallucinations. The film’s central theme is to help audiences become aware of the increased rate of Black maternal mortality and how Black women’s difficulties during pregnancy are often dismissed by the American healthcare system.

February 10: Rooting Out Systemic Racism: An Effective Strategy for Black Health and Wellness

Rooting Out Systemic Racism: An Effective Strategy for Black Health and Wellness

Thursday, February 10, 2-3 pm CST / 12-1 pm PST

Presented by: Dr. Moussa Magassa

Institutions of high education have an ethical and legal responsibility to promote and guarantee Black health and wellness. To do so, they however need to develop an effective strategy to root out systemic anti-Black racism. Anti-Black racism is prejudice, attitudes, beliefs, stereotyping or discrimination that is directed at people of African descent and is rooted in their unique history and experience of enslavement and colonization. Anti-Black racism is deeply embedded in Canadian institutions, policies, and practices, to the point that it becomes a part of our systems.

Systemic Anti-Black racism doesn’t only affect Black health and wellness but also Black people’s social, cultural, and political participation and access to opportunities and justice.

This practical and interactive presentation/workshop style will engage participants to critically assess their institution’s readiness for rooting out Anti-Black racism and promoting Black health and wellness.

February 11: Social Justice Beyond Borders Series: When Memory is Currency, When Currency is Memory

Social Justice Beyond Borders Series: When Memory is Currency, When Currency is Memory

Friday, February 11, 12-2 pm CST / 10 am-12 pm PST

Presented by Dr. Phanuel Antwi

In this presentation, I will re-member two memorable events in two different geographies and times. My turn to these events and times not only serves as a way to bind loss and violence and desire and pleasure but also as a way to loop both events and create a pocket of time to entangle these feeling structures (loss, violence, desire, pleasure) and their transhistorical emotions. The first memory occurred in Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1946 when Viola Desmond, a Black businesswoman, was dragged to jail from a movie theatre by a police officer for sitting in the wrong seating area. Viola Desmond’s punishment consisted of injured hips and knees, a night in jail, and a fine of $20. The second memory took place in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 2020, when George Floyd, a Black man, was buying a pack of cigarettes and the 17-year-old clerk of the family-owned grocery store called 911, believing a forgery was in progress when George Floyd presented a counterfeit $20 bill. George Floyd was pinned to the ground by one of the four officers who arrived for this alleged fraud, and the officer pressed his knee on his neck for more than eight minutes, killing George Floyd. The presentation will address the suggestion that binding and looping these moments together offer us a method of attending to Black social memory and that the $20 bill displays the symptoms of racial violence. Concerning these ideas, I will also present theories from Austin Clarke’s “membering” and Derek Walcott’s “muse of history” to document Black cultural memory and identify repeating patterns of anti-Black racism.

February 15: Allyship and White Fragility: Concepts and Issues

Allyship and White Fragility: Concepts and Issues

Tuesday, February 15, 8-9 pm CST/6-7 pm PST

Presented by: Corey Clay

This discussion will foster a conversation about allies and white fragility.

Many non-BIPOC live in a social environment that insulates them from race-based stressors. This fabricated environment of racial protection creates a false construct of people claiming to be allies, but the actions of these people are destructive to the real work that needs to be accomplished. This discussion will address what real allyship is and whether white fragility will be the ultimate roadblock to getting things done on any real basis. Will this fragility become the major stumbling block to true racial progress?

February 16: Common Hour: Queer Black Health care: What’s Missing?

Common Hour: Queer Black Health care: What’s Missing?

Wednesday, February 16, 12-1pm CST / 10-11am PST

Presented by: Ericka Hart and Dr. Jenae Thompson

Please join The Center for Diversity and Inclusion for a conversation with kinky, poly, cancer-warrior, activist, and sexuality educator Ericka Hart. Facilitated by Dr. Jenae Thompson, we will discuss issues related to the Queer Black community and Health Care as well as acknowledging community pain and ways to engage in advocacy during this pandemic.

February 23: Storytelling, Drums, Poetry, Songs and More With Jean Pierre Makosso

Storytelling, Drums, Poetry, Songs and More With Jean Pierre Makosso

Tuesday, February 23, 2-3pm CST / 12-1 pm PST

Presented by: Jean Pierre Makosso

Jean Pierre will welcome his audience to a place of mystery, intrigue, hopes, dreams, music, dancing, and stories that will capture your spirit. Fly with the eagles above the jungles of the Congo, where Jean Pierre was born. Roar with the lion, run with the giraffe, and dance with the monkeys. Move to the rhythm of the drums. Jean Pierre will tell you about his home and people, make you laugh, cry – and show you how to soar!

February 24: Common Hour: Reclaiming Black Visibility in the Vancouver Art Scene

Common Hour: Reclaiming Black Visibility in the Vancouver Art Scene

Wednesday, February 24, 2-3pm CST / 12-1 pm PST

Presented by: Krystal Paraboo

February 25: Towards Care and Dignity: Tools for Doing the Work

Towards Care and Dignity: Tools for Doing the Work

Friday, February 25, 12-2 pm CST / 10am-12pm PST

Presented by: Nic Wayara

In this session, participants are challenged to discuss and reflect on what doing “The Work” means, particularly in our commitments to collective liberation, justice, and community healing.

Centering the experiences and needs of Black people, as well as Indigenous, and all racialized people, we explore some of the ways that derail us from doing “The Work”, and the tools that can sustain us for the long haul.