In August 1619, between 20 and 30 enslaved Africans arrived in present-day Hampton, Virginia. The 400th Anniversary of the landing of the first enslaved Africans in English-occupied North America marked the beginning of slavery in the U.S and a history of anti-black laws, norms and practices that continue to shape U.S. culture and society.
The Center for Urban and Racial Equity recognizes that our work is inextricably linked to the legacy of slavery and racial oppression in the U.S. We see a direct connection between the quest for freedom that has defined the lived experiences of black people in the U.S. for the past four centuries and our vision for racially equitable workplaces, institutions and communities.
And Still We Rise Storytelling Event
Responding to a call from the 400 Years of Inequality Coalition for organizations to host place-based convenings to mark the historical and present-day significance of 1619, CURE hosted a storytelling event titled 400 Years: And Still We Rise. The event featured eight dynamic storytellers from across the Washington, DC area who told stories about enslaved people, the struggles of integration, gentrification and the everyday racism that has become part of daily reality of living while black in America. We were also joined by the Mercy Band who provided musical entertainment for the evening. It was a moving and powerful evening of connection and celebration that lifted up the collective stories of black struggle, perseverance, hope and vision for a just future.
We’re pleased to share highlights from the event and videos of the phenomenal performances by the talented storytellers who graced the audience with their stories and creative magic. We’re grateful to Baba-C, Nubia, Sesha, Eboni-Rose, Dwight, Monique, Kymone, Arthuretta for sharing their gifts with us. [Click on the photos below to view videos of event speakers and storytellers]