African American Assimilation

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500 Years Later

This past weekend, I attended an event for Black History Month. At this event, there was a movie showing of the film 500 years later. The film covered issues from slavery, to the civil rights movement, to discrimination of African Americans today. After the film, the speaker, Kamau Kemayo, talked about the issues in the film and because of slavery, discrimination, and the baggage that African Americans hold on to which has caused Blacks to not adapt well to assimilation. What I have learned from Race and Ethnic class is the assimilation which she was specifically speaking of is structural assimilation, which is the assimilation African Americans have the lowest of. Structural assimilation only takes place when the dominant group treats/sees you equally. I believe this movie and talk were a great learning experience. I learned more about assimilation and the different types of discrimination Blacks faced, that I myself as an African American woman has not faced. I agreed with most of the information that was brought to my attention during the talk, besides her statement of how African Americans should not learn to assimilate, because it takes away from our culture and we should not change who we are just to please others. I disagree because, I believe many African Americans have learned to assimilate and have not lost any of their culture and I also think Everyone must learn to assimilate in order to be successful and get rid of some of the stereotypes we face today that helps Blacks hold on to bad baggage, that she was speaking of earlier. Other than that, I found the lecture and movie to be a great experience.
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