Happy Juneteenth! This week, we’re taking the opportunity to practice active allyship by learning more about the history of the Juneteenth holiday and its importance.
If you are unfamiliar, let’s begin with a mini-history lesson.
June 19th is the day the slaves were granted freedom, specifically the slaves in Texas and other southern, Confederate states that were fighting to keep their slave labor. Since 1865, Black Americans have celebrated June 19th by honoring the contributions of African Americans to our country and spending time with loved ones in a celebration of Black culture.
No conversation about Black culture would be complete without recognizing its vast influence on entertainment. From music to television to film, black cultural contributions have been integral. As we roll into this Juneteenth holiday, let’s shine a light on Oscar-winning black actors and actresses. There remains much work to be done to fix the problem of underrepresentation in Hollywood, but these bright Black stars broke racial barriers to help pave the way for all people of color in the arts.