Recognized in many states as a holiday, Juneteenth celebrates June 19th—the day in 1865 that word of Lincoln’s signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, two years prior, freeing all enslaved people, made its way to the state of Texas.
The National Juneteenth Observance Foundation describes the observance of Juneteenth as being “about the journey and achievement of African Americans—from a horrific period of sanctioned enslavement to the pinnacle of human endeavors.”
Though the date has not yet been declared a national holiday, despite efforts by the Juneteenth Foundation, it is a date observed by many Americans across the country. Here are some related resources you may find interesting.
- In “What Is Juneteenth?” Henry Louis Gates Jr. reflects on the history of the holiday and shares the remarkable story of how, in the words he shares from scholar William H. Wiggins Jr, Juneteenth took on “a life of its own.”
- This calendar entry fron ReadWriteThink.org provides activity ideas and resource links.
- In this ReadWriteThink lesson, students use a Venn Diagram to compare Juneteenth celebrations to Fourth of July celebrations and hypothesize about the differences.
- The Library of Congress’s Civil Rights Resource Guide includes an extensive selection of links to digital collections from its archives, including the Frederick Douglass Papers, the Rosa Parks Papers, and From Slavery to Freedom: The African-American Pamphlet Collection, 1822-1909.
- Hidden Legends: Clara Luper—this photo essay based on the life of Oklahoma teacher and Civil Rights activist Clara Luper (1923 – 2011) argues that Luper’s story is not an Oklahoma story but a national one.
You might also be interested in these recent antiracist resources from NCTE:
- Build Your Stack: Antiracist Books for Your Curriculum Today—a blog post from the NCTE Committee Against Racism and Bias in the Teaching of English
- Resources to Help You Continue the Conversation (based on the NCTE event Stamped: A Conversation on Racism from the Authors of the New York Times Bestseller Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You)
- Being an Antiracist Educator Is a Verb—a blog post from the NCTE Committee Against Racism and Bias in the Teaching of English
- NCTE Statement on Anti-Racism to Support Teaching and Learning
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