Blackness and the Black Experience
The phenomenon known as blackness or the black experience is the seven million year chronicle of African history taking place either on the African continent and (or) across the globe as a result of the African Diaspora. The African history has for the most part been told by outsiders and not by inhabitants of the African Continent itself. This is true for many different reasons. One of these reasons is that traditionally the African method of keeping records and history was done orally opposed to many other cultures where history was kept by a written account. I found this interesting because Africans are one of the only culture to keep record this way. Another reason for this is because of the recent colonization of the African continent. The view points of the occupying Europeans became the basis for the official history of the area and era. What most fail to realize and is the the perspective of the Africans being enslaved, conquered, and colonized through an almost 700 year span. The prominent African historian Terrence Ranger was influential in developing the notion that African history should be looked at from the perspective of Africans themselves. This is opposed to outsiders to the culture and historical consciousness attempting to record the history. As stated in Journal to the Black Studies: “Historical Consciousness cannot be imported……It is the soul of a people.”(Black Studies pg. 13) This concept alone is reason for Africans to be the masters of their own past. As easy as it is to explain what blackness or the black experience is, where it occurs and when it occurs, it is much more difficult to describe or explain what make up the facets of these experiences. This is because there is not one true black experience, but many different experiences felt by those of African descent around the world. I would really like to emphasize this. Being black has nothing to do with how one acts, dresses, or speaks. It has...
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