The Media’s the most powerful entity on Earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses. If you’re not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.
Often history is written with a narrative that certain individuals or groups are trying to persuade you to believe. As we’ve seen in the news media this year, even our trusty textbooks in school can be written to hide the truth (calling slaves “workers”). During Black History Month, I thought it would be a great idea to post some non-fiction sources about African American history and current events that are African American sources.
Henry Louis Gates: Harvard Professor of PBS fame, also founder of theroot.com, an African American news media site that provides headlines and opinions that may not be prevalent in the mainstream media. Mr. Gates’ work includes a variety of documentaries, books and more. One book that for me exemplifies Mr. Gates’ work is Life Upon These Shores – Looking at African American History 1513 -2008; informative with graphic illustrations, photographs and historical texts. A comprehensive work that touches on many significant topics of Black history.
New Pittsburgh Courier: I feel very lucky that we get the paper copy of this weekly newspaper in our office, and before it goes on the shelf every week I’m able to read through it. Originally the Pittsburgh Courier, this newspaper has been providing the community with news from an African American perspective since 1907. Excellent journalism and in-depth coverage of issues most media only glance over such as affordable housing, gentrification, diversity and gun violence. Read it online or stop by your local Library.
1839mag.com: Blog/online magazine of primarily writers of color on a variety of topics like race and gender equality, social justice and many other topics. Very creative writers that address issues local and national.
Very Smart Brothas: Blog co-founded by Pittsburgh native, author and Ebony contributor Damon Young, VSB’s writers are enlightening, entertaining, serious and often funny too. If you follow VSB on social media, you’ll find at least one awesome thing to read every day!
I know this list is very far from extensive. What would you recommend as great media to learn more about the African American experience, both locally and nationally? I’d love to read/watch/view your selections.