Strath Union Launches Black History Month Programme

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The full programme for Strathclyde Students’ Union Black History Month celebrations has been announced.

Now in its 31st year, the month highlights the vital contributions that Black people have made towards society and creates awareness on the achievements made by some of the world's most iconic figures.

Featuring a wide range of events, panel discussions, masterclasses and film screenings, the month opened with the launch of the photo exhibition Our (In)visible Strength. The gallery will celebrate the present contributions of African and Caribbean communities, and spotlight the amazing strengths and contributions that have been made within Glasgow and the wider community.

Programme highlights include:

  •          And, where am I? (October 26), a workshop facilitated by Councillor Graham Campbell, Glasgow School of Art People of Colour Society and Flag Up Scotland Jamaica, that will encourage you to trace your own roots and find unique connections to world history within your own ancestry

  •          A special film screening of Goran Olsson’s 2011 documentary The Black Power Mixtape 1967 – 1975 (October3), which provides a powerful insight into the evolution of the Black Power movement in American society as viewed through Swedish journalists and filmmakers.

  •          Let’s Talk About Race (October 4) will be is a frank and honest discussion on how we personally feel about our racial and cultural identity, that can often be difficult, negative and taboo.

  •          A family movie morning screening of Michel Ocelot’s 1998 animated classic Kirikou and the Sorceress (October 31). This is a family friendly event - parents and children welcome!

Students will also have the chance to come and learn to spin the decks with Strath Union’s resident DJ, Kwaku Adjei (October 17). The workshop will cover all the basics from putting together a set list, tips on software and getting the crowed hyped. Those who take part will then have a chance to perform a small set alongside DJ Kwaku for our Afrobeats night on October 20th.

All events will be held within Strath Union and are free to attend and are open to all students and members of the public. The full list of events can be found on the Strath Union website.

In addition, the month will add further insight to key individuals and their work. This will include the first Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Patrice Lumumba; British nurse, traveller and author, Mary Seacole; James McCune Smith, the first African American to hold a medical degree; tennis superstar, Serena Williams; the Nigerian novelist and poet, Professor Chinva Achebe; and the first elected female head of state in Africa and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Black History Month has always been a staple within Strath Union’s campaign and events calendar. Last year, they proudly unveiled a mural dedicated to Nelson Mandela to celebrate 30 years and shine a light towards his strong relationship with Glasgow and the Union. You can see a video of Glasgow based artists, Conzo & Glöbel, working on the piece here.

Strath Union’s Vice President Diversity, Titi Farukuoye, said: “I love Black History Month because it centres on the narratives we normally need to fight to hear from. There is something incredible that happens when you suddenly feel your surroundings and environment represents you!

“October is one of the best times of the year, I always try to make it to as many events as possible - there is always something new, empowering and exciting to take away!”

Students can follow the Union’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram page for the latest updates throughout the month.

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