Penn student, faculty, and cultural groups have planned a variety of events throughout February in honor of Black History Month.
Groups including Makuu: The Black Cultural Center and UMOJA — an umbrella organization for Penn’s Black student groups — have planned community-focused events throughout the month, ranging from from musical performances to community service projects.
Makuu released an event calendar to community members through their newsletter on Feb. 1, highlighting events that will occur through Feb. 27. The 2024 BHM theme is “African Americans and the Arts,” which influenced the organization to focus this year's programming on “celebrating the impact Black Americans have made through the arts, music, cultural movements, and more,” according to a Makuu Instagram post.
Makuu kicked off BHM with a Temple University theatrical performance of Ntozake Shange’s play “From Okra to Greens” on Feb. 1. Upcoming events include an Afro poetry workshop with Philadelphia-based poet Blew Kind on Feb. 10 and a jazz concert at City Institute on Feb. 13.
Penn students are also organizing programming in celebration of BHM.
UMOJA has partnered with Black-owned nonprofit organizations and leaders from the broader Philadelphia community to organize Black Philly Week, which will run from Feb. 19 to Feb. 25. The events — which include a panel, community service events, and a brunch — center around themes of land justice and community prosperity.
The Annenberg School for Communication is also hosting the second annual W.E.B. Du Bois lecture in Public Social Science on Feb. 23. The lecture will be moderated by Penn Lasry Family Professor of Race Relations Tukufu Zuberi and will feature remarks by Dr. Aldon Morris, the Northwestern University Leon Forrest professor of Sociology and African American Studies.
Penn's BHM programming follows last month’s discussions surrounding racial justice and equality at the Martin Luther King symposium, which ran from Jan. 15 to Feb. 2.