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Jan. 30, 2004
DH 04 TK008
Contact: Thomas Knox
(310) 243-3367


Cal State Dominguez Hills Kicks off African American History Month


Carson, CA – The vivid colors of red, black and green, the three colors that are traditionally associated with African American culture, will adorn the lawns of the University Sculpture Garden at California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) The University is kicking off its gala celebration of African American History Month on Monday, Feb. 2. The monthlong activities begin with an African Market Place where local vendors will share arts and crafts, and colorful fabrics that are normally associated with the African American culture.

Throughout the month, the CSUDH Department of Africana Studies will partner with the University’s Associated Students, Inc., the Women’s Center, the Office of Student Life and the Multicultural Center to provide a series of musical performances, panel discussions and poetry readings to highlight the history and culture of African Americans.

University officials will join the City of Carson for the 10th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity Breakfast at the Carson Community Center on Tuesday, Feb. 3, beginning at 7:30 a.m. Awards will be presented to outstanding community members, a university faculty member and student for their exemplary contributions to social justice.

Noted civil rights activist James Forman will deliver the keynote address, which will honor the historic 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decision in the case of Brown v. Board of Education. In that case, the high court ruled against a decades-long practice of racial segregation in America’s public schools.

On Wednesday, Feb. 11, celebrated author Pamela Johnson, will host a lecture on African American literature. Johnson has gained increased popularity for her books on sensuality between men and women of color.

“I think the significance of Black History Month is twofold,” said Iset Anuakan, Ph.D., assistant professor of Africana Studies at CSUDH and chair of the University’s African American History Month committee. “First, we must acknowledge the African American experience as unique, contributory, and at the center of this country’s historic ideals on equality. African Americans have insisted that the nation live up to its creed, thus improve the quality of life for not only themselves, but for all its citizenry.

“Second, I believe Carter G. Woodson, who created Negro History Week in 1926, gave us an opportunity to examine the omissions of the African legacy in building civilizations, and to revise the emphasis on Western traditions in education. This has been at the center of the problems that surround history and its extension into the present.”

Highlights of the month’s festivities include a Langston Hughes poetry night on Feb. 17, a jazz performance on Feb. 12 by Talya Ferro and a panel discussion on the Three Strikes Law on Feb. 26.

The following is a list of activities for the CSUDH African American History Month:

Feb. 2, - African American Market Place, all day in the University Sculpture Garden

Feb. 3, - 10th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity Breakfast Awards – Carson Community Center at 7:30 a.m., 801 East Carson Street

Feb. 4, - Film series, “Against the Odds,” 10 a.m., LaCorte Hall

Feb. 11, - Film series, “Little Girl Lost,” 10 a.m., LaCorte Hall; Lecture series, author Pamela Johnson, Claudia Hampton Lecture Hall

Feb. 12, - Film presentation, “Gothika,” 11:30 a.m., Loker University Student Union; Jazz performance, “Cotton Comes to Harlem,” 8 p.m. with Talya Ferro, LaCorte Hall

Feb. 17, - Book talk with Gus Martin, CSUDH assistant professor of Public Administration, “An Afrocentric Perspective on Terrorism” at 2:30 p.m., Loker University Student Union; Langston Hughes Poetry Night, 7 p.m., Loker University Student Union

Feb. 18, - Soul artist, Vonyse, noon, Loker University Student Union; Diversity chat on African American relationships featuring the Spike Lee film, “School Daze,” 7 p.m., University Housing; African Caribbean play, “Ti-Jean and His Brother,” 7 p.m., Loker University Student Union

Feb. 19 – W.E.B. Dubois Lecture series and panel discussion on Brown v. Board of Education, noon, Loker University Student Union

Feb. 23, - Film series, “Without Fear or Shame,” 10 a.m., LaCorte Hall; African Market Place, all day, vendor walkway; Dr. Lillian K. Beam, speaking on “African Women & Developing Institutions, 1 p.m., Loker University Student Union

Feb. 24, - Film and lecture series with Ron Wilkins, “The Haitian Bicentennial 1804 – 2004; Celebrating the World’s First Black Republic,” 1 p.m., Claudia Hampton Lecture Hall

Feb. 25, - Film series, “Lift Every Voice,” 10 a.m., LaCorte Hall; Lecture series, John Henrik Clarke with filmmaker St. Clair Bourne, 2 p.m., Loker University Student Union

Feb. 26, - Panel discussion on the Three Strikes Law, noon, Loker University Student Union; Tupac Poetry Night, 7 p.m., Loker University Student Union

Other University sponsors of the African American History Month celebration are:
CSUDH Theatre Department
CSUDH Music Department
Pan African Union
Toro Productions
CSUDH Education Department
Educational Resource Center
CSUDH Institute for the Study of International & Cultural Diversity
CSUDH University Advancement

Cal State Dominguez Hills offers 43 undergraduate majors and 19 master’s along with multiple-subject and single-subject teaching credentials. We take pride in being the university where dreamers become achievers. Visit the university Web site at for complete information on campus curriculum and activities.

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Last updated Friday, February 3, 2004, 1:38 pm, by Stephanie Brown (sb)