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The Origins of Black Families' Christmas and New Year's Eve Traditions

Friday, December 16 at approximately 10 p.m.

Bagley Wright Theater

Join scholar and community educator AJ Musewe in a special post-show talk about holiday celebrations through a Black perspective.

In this brief but comprehensive 30-minute talk, AJ will cover what Christmas and New Year's Eve mean to Black people in the past and today. Learn more about how these traditional winter holidays in the United States are tied to the Emancipation Proclamation and a sense of annual renewal. We will also explore holiday customs in Black communities, through the cultural lens of food, religious expression, and historical events including Watch Night. Watch Night, or "Freedom's Eve," marks when Black people across the country watched and waited for the news of freedom on the night of December 31, 1862. Join us to reflect upon these treasured traditions and the impactful history that accompany these customs.

Meet the Speaker

AJ Musewe