Black History Month events, Fermata Ballet Collective’s ‘VIRTUAL’


Matthew Denis
 
| Register-Guard

The arts is an outward expression of an inner humanity. Not only does this exposition create a richer society, but it recognizes a people’s existence — something that’s been lacking for many outcasts to this country’s citizenry.

“When I was going to school, I began to be bugged by the teaching of American history because it seemed that that history had been taught without cognizance of my presence,” iconic Black author James Baldwin said in 1964.

Historian Carter G. Woodson had the same frustration in 1926 when he set the foundation for what would become today’s national Black History Month, observed each February.

As described by the U.S. State Department, Woodson was a 17-year-old untutored coal miner in 1909. At 19, he entered high school after teaching himself the fundamentals of English and arithmetic, mastering the four-year curriculum in less than two years. At 22, after almost a year at Berea College in Kentucky, Woodson returned to the coal shafts, studying Latin and Greek before and after hours laboring hundreds of feet below the earth. After earning a master’s degree at the University of Chicago, Woodson went on to Harvard where he became the second Black American to receive a doctorate.

Woodson witnessed African Americans were seldom mentioned in this nation’s history — a false narrative that led him and Jesse E. Moorland to found the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History to promote Black history and celebrate African American accomplishment. Toward this mission, Woodson and the ASALH launched a “Negro History Week” in 1926, choosing the second week in February, to honor the birthdays of Frederick Douglass on Feb. 14 and Abraham Lincoln on Feb. 12.

After growing municipal acceptance, President Gerald Ford decreed Black History Month a national observance in 1976, the 50th anniversary of its founding, coinciding with America’s bicentennial.

This month, Matt’s Picks will honor Black History Month in pursuing inclusive, insightful culture coverage. This won’t, however, exclude additional adventures and events in and around Eugene-Springfield. For a full listing of goings-ons, visit registerguard.com/events

‘Are We Still Not Saved? Race, Democracy and Educational Inequality,’ University of Oregon School of Law

This Friday, American University Washington College of Law Professor Lia Eperson will present “Are We Still Not Saved? Race, Democracy and Educational Inequality.”

This collaborative effort combines the UO School of Law’s Derrick Bell Lecture with the African American Workshop and Lecture Series, facilitated by the Division of Equity and Inclusion. Bell served as the first African American School of Law dean, from 1980 to 1985, and is still considered an influential voice examining society and culture as they connect to race, law, and power. 

Epperson is a nationally recognized civil rights, constitutional law and education policy expert. Her scholarship centers on implications for educational equity by promoting a constitutional dialogue between federal courts and political branches.

The virtual presentation will take place via Zoom from noon to 1:15 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12. Epperson also will be meeting with students and faculty. Individuals must RSVP to attend the event. Registration and details at inclusion.uoregon.edu/bhm.

‘In Conversation With: Raffaella Falchi Macias,’ Eugene Library Foundation

Also this Friday, ELF presents “In Conversation with: Raffaella Falchi Macias: The Intersection of Visual Design and Cultural Arts: Carnaval Dance & Costume Making.”

Macias is the artistic director and dounder of the Sambaxé Dance Company and executive director of the Youth Art Exchange in San Francisco.

Macias’s multicultural heritage inspired her interest in the visual and performing arts. She worked with the favela community of Manguinhos in Rio de Janeiro under the Brazilian architect Jorge Mario Jauregui and his Favela/Barrio project. Now, Eugene has an opportunity to here the woman who wears many hats and wears them well.

“In Conversation With” begins at noon Friday, Feb. 12 on Zoom. Free with registration; eplfoundation.org/events/in-conversation-with-experts-enthusiasts

‘VIRTUAL,’ Fermata Ballet Collective

This Saturday and Sunday, the Fermata Ballet Collective will debut “VIRTUAL,” a dynamic and progressive body of works that will include choreography from artists Alaja Badalich and Caitlin Christopher in collaboration local with videographers.

This multifaceted streaming show will emphasize the diversity of expression within the Pacific Northwest dance community, highlighted by four original, reflective works that celebrate the growth collective members experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as introduce the Fermata Ballet Collective. 

“VIRTUAL” shows at 6 p.m. Saturday Feb. 13 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 14 with a member Q&A following. Tickets $12; 541-972-3539 or fermataballetcollective.com.

‘The History and Future of Scientific Racism and Eugenics Panel Discussion,’ Wayne Morse Center for Law, UO

Next Tuesday, the Wayne Morse Center for Law will host a panel that considers the enduring legacy of eugenics alongside the possibilities that genetic technologies now offer for understanding population histories, diverse and diasporic ancestries, and race- and gender-based health disparities.

Panelists include University of Michigan history and gender studies professor and author Alexandra Minna Stern and director for the Laboratory of Genetic Anthropology and Biocultural Studies at Vanderbilt University associate professor in Nashville, Tennessee. 

The panel runs from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16. Free sign up required at calendar.uoregon.edu.



Source link