Many people have been asking about and educating themselves on the history of Juneteeth recently. Historian and Educator Cheyney McKnight lives it.
Showcasing the struggle, as well as celebrating joy as resistance, Ms. Knight presents the lived experiences of the enslaved and freed Black people in United States history.
She shares a bit about the Displays of Juneteenth in an article for Artists' Resource Mobilization.
Each year black Americans take a day to joyfully celebrate another year of freedom for their people. They do so in spite of the daily trials of being black in America. They may fire up the grill or dig barbeque pits to cook choice pieces of meat, and lay out an abundance of potato salad, and green leafy vegetables. They then prepare their best family friendly playlist, put on their new Juneteenth shirt or outfit, and gather with friends and family on the dance floor.
There is a joy that permeates the atmosphere. It is displayed in the smiling faces, the laughter, the sharp dance moves, and the festive decorations. If you find yourself observing one of these celebrations, please remember that this display is a visible form of resistance. Do not make the common mistake of erasing their pain through their celebrations.
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