African Americans overcame the days of slavery because of the all struggles they went through. Which parts of the African American History matters the most? When exploring African American history, the most important things to focus on are that because of the times, black people were enslaved and treated poorly.
They endured it all and worked hard to rise above the boundaries of slavery and prejudice. However, the most portentous aspect of African-American history is that it’s heritage; its history; and it are over. Now an African American has become the President of the United States of America. (African American History). During the slavery years, African people were subjected to some of the worst treatments of the history of this planet. They were forced to work for white people as slaves, but that is nothing compared with the treatment they received. Slaves were beaten, mal-nourished, and disrespected as a whole. Slaves were considered as low as the lowest forms of life. They were treated less than some forms of life. They were treated as property that was disposable and replaceable. (To Be A Slave).
Slavery was a major issue in the 19th century. African Americans over came so
many trials and tribulations during the 1960s. The African Americans encountered a widespread of social and professional discrimination. Their unrest demanded activism, many African American artists created imagery intended for black audiences. Black expressionism was born out of the Civil Rights Movement. The artworks it engendered – primarily brightly colored figurative compositions — were expressive, rich in palette, and politically charged. Expressionists explored a wide range of subjects and techniques, all seeking to portray black pride and identity. (WPA).
The process of ending slavery was the subject of intense debate in the United States during the first part of the 19th century was a big issue for the African Americans. Slavery was abolished throughout the United States with the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution in 1865. An estimated four million slaves were freed.Today, African Americans constitute 13.3 percent of the total U.S. population, the second largest ethnic group after Hispanics. Even after the end of slavery, however, American blacks were generally hampered by segregation and inferior education, despite the establishment of some institutions dedicated to their advancement. In the late twentieth century, the struggle by black artists to create an African American cultural identity evolved into a desire for recognition of their creative achievements as artists, regardless of their race. Over the course of the century, the production of images that focus on African American life, its history in the United States, and its African heritage cultivated a unique artistic character and helped to overcome social injustice. We hope that this exhibition reveals the beauty of African American art, an art that defies categorization (Langston Hughes).
African Americans have contributed a great deal too the American culture. There are so many famous African Americans and so many accomplishments by them such as: Jan Ernst Matzeliger invented a shoemaking machine that increased shoemaking speed by 900%.Lewis Latimer invented an important part of the light bulb- the carbon filament, Granville T. Woods invented a train-to-station communication system, George Washington Carver invented peanut butter and 400 plant products! Garrett Morgan invented the gas mask. Otis Boykin invented the electronic control devices for guided missiles, IBM computers, and the pacemaker. Dr. Patricia. E. Bath (1949–) invented a method of eye surgery that has helped many blind people to see. Imagine yourself in the shoes of these inventors. Think about being in a situation where you are the first person to break into a job where no one else like you has ever worked. Imagine how hard you would have to work to prove yourself especially being an African American. (Mary Bellis).
Dr.Martin Luther King, Jr. whom was very important African American minister, clergyman, activist and prominent leader in the American civil rights movement. His lectures and dialogues stirred the concern and sparked the conscience of a generation. The movements and marches he led brought significant changes in the fabric of American life through his courage and self devotion. This devotion gave direction to the thirteen years of civil rights activities. His charismatic leadership inspired men and women, young and old, in this nation and around the world
. Dr.Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil Rights leader who was well known for his
famous speech “Free at Last” and who now has his own national holiday that we all celebrate (The King Center).
Barack Obama an African American who became the 44th president of the United States and the first African-American President in U.S. history. After working at Business International Corporation (A company that provided international business information to corporate clients) and NYPIRG, Obama moved to Chicago in 1985. There, he worked as a community organizer with low-income residents in Chicago’s Roseland community and the Altgeld Gardens public housing development on the city’s South Side. During these years, Obama worked with both Democrats and Republicans in drafting legislation on ethics, expanded health care services and early childhood education programs for the poor. He also created a state earned-income tax credit for the working poor. And after a number of inmates on death row were found innocent, Obama worked with law enforcement officials to require the videotaping of interrogations and confessions in all capital cases. (History Channel).
In the November 2004 general election, Obama received 70% of the vote to Keyes’s 27%, the largest electoral victory in Illinois history. Obama became only the third African- American elected to the U.S. Senate since Reconstruction. In February 2007, Obama made headlines when he announced his candidacy for the 2008 Democratic Presidential nomination. He was locked in a tight battle with former first lady and current U.S. Senator from New York, Hillary Rodham Clinton until he became the presumptive nominee on June 3, 2008. On November 4th, 2008, Obama defeated Republican president nominee John McCain for the position of U.S. President. He is now the 44th president of The United States.
Oprah Winfery who launched the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1986 as a nationally syndicated program with its placement on 120 channels and an audience of 10. million people, the show grossed $125 million by the end of its first year, of which Winfrey received $30 million. She soon gained ownership of the program from ABC, drawing it under the control of her new production company, Harpo Productions (‘Oprah’ spelled backwards) and making more and more money from syndication. Resulting in becoming the richest African American women in the world. (AAH).
Rosa Parks as the mother of the Civil Rights Movement. Her refusal to surrender her seat to a white passenger on a Montgomery, Alabama bus spurred on a city-wide boycott and helped launch nation-wide efforts to end segregation of public facilities. Rosa Parks received many accolades during her lifetime including the Spingarn Medal, the NAACP’s highest award. She also received the Martin Luther King Jr. Award. On September 9, 1996 President Bill Clinton awarded Rosa Parks the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest honor given by the U.S. executive branch. The next year, she was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest award given by the U.S. legislative branch. In 1999, Time magazine named Rosa Parks one of the 20 most influential people of the twentieth century. (History Channel).
Malcolm X A Controversial Civil Rights Activists& Influential Advocate of Black Nationalism In the four years of the American Civil War, the United States began to redeem itself. African Americans as human beings went through so much in their days from the 250-year-long tragedy of slavery.While some people have proposed the offering of reparations, there is a belief that this will never happen due to the unwillingness of white people to make an effort.
The call for reparations seems to have been adjusted to merely a call for an official government apology. Some white people argue against an apology for slavery because they don’t feel responsible for the acts. This would justify the call for reparations. At the time this text was originally typed, African Americans have not received reparations or an official government apology for slavery. Some feelings and attitudes toward slavery have changed very little in the past 400 years. Throughout this time frame, white people have continued to collectively hold higher socioeconomic positions than Black people in the United States. (African American Atlas). This position of power and wealth may make the issue of reparations seem almost like an attack because it seems to be Black people trying to take things from white people for something that happened long before these people were born. Black people still suffer from the effects of slavery and some can still see the need for reparations, or an official apology for African American slavery.
Therefore, the discussion and conflicts may continue for a long time. Other ethnic groups fought for reparations for many years, finally reaching their goal. Perseverance is a part of being black, and while we cannot determine the outcome of all the call for reparations,Or if the issue will be important in the future, we can be assured that our people will not allow the importance of our struggles to be forgotten. (American Atlas).
As anyone can see, the preceding people faced suffering at the hands of others. Slavery was wrong. Yet, each person persevered and won his or her own battles one way or another. It took years and a lot of work. Being a part of history should be respected as just so. These people should be remembered and studied, but not necessarily glorified. Some slaves earned freedom by hard work; yet others took different approaches that weren’t always admirable. In addition, the people of today’s generation should not be blamed for what happened in the past, which is beyond our control. (African American History).
America is made up of different languages and cultures, and though we are different in heritage we need to unite as a country. Nothing can be done to repair the wrongs of slavery. No matter how much time goes by, slavery will always be a ghost in America’s past, spooking anyone who looks back. Now America needs to look forward to a tomorrow where slavery doesn’t exist, where blacks and whites are equal, and where racism isn’t a factor. We need to make that happen. I believe reparations to be ones in a new generation of Americans. Perhaps the most America can do for it’s people is to apologize for slavery, promise it will not ever happen again, and then concentrate on working towards a better tomorrow. African Americans overcame many trials and tribulations during the 19th century.
In conclusion, many people doubted African Americans but we have come a long way today in the 21st century. We’ve come from being slaves; someone owning us, to President of the United States. This proves that we are all equal no matter what your race or religion is. It also proves you can be anything in the world if you really want. If you set your mind to something you really want to do you can do it.
“African American History: Heritage, not Hate.” 123 HelpMe.com13 Mar 2009
Encyclopedia: Lincoln, Abraham. (2004). The History Channel website. Retrieved 19:13, May 9, 2006, from http://www.historychannel.com/thcsearch/thc_resourcedetail.do?encyc_id=214843.
“To Be A Slave.” 123HelpMe.com. 13 Mar 2009
The African-American atlas: Black history and culture / Molefi K. Asante and Mark Mattson. New York: Macmillan, 1998. Reference E185.A79 1998 [Chapter 2: The Transatlantic Journey.
African American History,” Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2008
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