Origins of Black History Month

February 24, 2011  |  

by Sue Naylor

In the United States and Canada, the month of October is celebrated as the Black History Month. It all began in 1926 when Carter G. Woodson started a Negro History Week or a Black History Week that was dedicated to educating Americans about the cultural history, the background and the remarkable achievements of the African Americans. This was created to promote a general sense of awareness about black history being an integral part of American history as well as world history, as a whole. While several critics expressed their opinion against this event, understanding black history and celebrating Black History Month has its own advantages.

Black history is taught as an additional session on history for kids who study in elementary schools, high schools and universities across the United States. In fact, many textbooks on history always include a few passages on black history. There have been several debates regarding the usefulness of celebrating this month that is solely dedicated to the history of one single race. Some experts have expressed their dissatisfaction of celebrating an entire month to promote African American history.

Others argue about picking the shortest month of the year to celebrate black history. African American celebrities likes Morgan Freeman also feel that celebrating Black History Month is like relegating black history to a single month of the entire year and separating it from American history. However, whatever may be the arguments made around it, the truth is the youth does benefit from the annual Black History Month.

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