February marks the beginning of Black History Awareness Month at Geneseo, and in the spirit of last semester's activism and an ongoing effort toward racial equality, a series of events are scheduled throughout the month.
Kevin Morris Washington's exhibit "Within Our Gates," an artistic reflection on race and culture in America with memorial paintings representing lynchings, opened on Jan. 28 in the Lederer Gallery. Washington will speak about it on Thursday, Feb. 7 at 4 p.m.
On Jan. 31, Geneseo Opportunities for Leadership Development (GOLD) presented the Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Address with Dave Dennis, a Freedom Rider and Mississippi director of the Congress of Racial Equality during the 1960s civil-rights movement.
The Office of Multicultural Affairs and Black Studies presented a showing of the documentary Ethnic Notions on Feb. 4, and will continue the film series next week with showings of Bamboozled. Professors from various departments will lead discussion following the film
The 11th Annual Xerox Convention will feature a lecture titled, "Critical Realities in Urban Contexts" on Feb. 9 in Newton, and the Black Student Union's annual Soul Food dinner will take place later this month.
Tom Matthews, director of GOLD, encouraged students to attend such programs throughout the month and semester.
"Even if they're not specifically related to black history," he said, "they all work towards cultural competency."
As coordinator of multicultural programs for the Center for Community, Fatima Johnson was pleased with everything taking place for this year's Black History Month, and emphasized that many departments and organizations that came together to make it work.
"One of the nice things about Geneseo is that there are a number of offices which are doing great things for the month," she said. "There are different layers to reach different segments of the campus community."