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Sat, Dec 30

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African American History Culture Museum

Kwanzaa & Watch Night: Visions of Freedom

Discover how Afrofuturism creates a link between Watch Night and Kwanzaa, two cultural holidays that encourage African Americans to envision their own freedom at the National Museum of African American History & Culture

Kwanzaa & Watch Night: Visions of Freedom
Kwanzaa & Watch Night: Visions of Freedom

Time & Location

Dec 30, 2023, 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM

African American History Culture Museum, 1400 Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20560, USA

About the event

Discover how Afrofuturism creates a link between Watch Night and Kwanzaa, two cultural holidays that encourage African Americans to envision their own freedom.

Watch Night marks the time when African Americans watched and waited for the Emancipation Proclamation to take effect on January 1, 1863. As Fredrick Douglass, one of the original Afrofuturists wrote “I longed to have a future—A future with hope in it.”

To celebrate Frederick Douglass and other freedom seekers, visitors are invited to create a scrapbook with images from the Museum's collection. Scrapbooking, a common pastime of the time, was important to African Americans who used these books to affirm their self-worth and imagine a better future.

Kwanzaa, a celebration created in 1966, provides a cultural grounding in and a reaffirmation of African American culture. With a focus on the importance of family and the strength of community, Kwanzaa’s seven principals provide the building blocks for a bright future.

In addition to creating a scrapbook visitors can participate in activities that honor the last three principles of Kwanzaa – Kuumba (creativity), Imani (faith) and Nia (purpose).

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