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Northwest Indiana Event Calendar


IU Northwest Celebrates 50 Years of Black Studies

Feb 22 01:00 PM - 03:00 PM

Indiana University Northwest - Gary


Indiana University Northwest


Indiana University Northwest’s Department of Minority Studies, the Black Student Union, and the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Multicultural Affairs (ODEMA) invite the campus and community to celebrate 50 years of Black Studies at IU Northwest with events through the month of February.

The campus’s yearly observance of Black History Month takes on a special meaning this year as it follows the 50th anniversary of the first course offered in African American History beginning in 1968. Plans to develop a full curriculum and degree surrounding Black Studies began to quicken then, with core courses offered in the spring of 1969. By 1972, a curriculum in Black Studies was firmly established.

Here is a summary of events to commemorate 50 years of Black Studies at IU Northwest:

Feb. 4: 50th Anniversary of the Black Studies Program

6 to 9 p.m., Monday, Feb. 4
Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium, Savannah Center

Kicking off the celebration will be a performance by the dance group, Maxine Simpson’s Jazzy Ladies and Gents Line Dance Group at 6 p.m.

At 6:30 p.m., the IU Northwest Black Student Union will present an award to IU Southeast Chancellor Emeritus F.C. Richardson. Previously the Dean of the College of Arts and Science at IU Northwest, Richardson was instrumental in the creation of the Black Studies degree program at IU Northwest.

At 7 p.m., Abdul Alkalimat, will take the stage as keynote speaker. Alkalimat (Ph.D., University of Chicago) is an emeritus professor of African American Studies and Information Science at the University of Illinois, and guest professor at Renmin University in Beijing, China. As a founder of Black Studies, he wrote the first textbook Introduction to Afro-American Studies (1973) on display at the new Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Born in Chicago, he has held leadership positions in both professional and activist organizations. His most recent books are The Wall of Respect: Public Art and Black Liberation in 1960s Chicago (2017), and Black Toledo: A Documentary History of the African American Experience in Toledo Ohio (2018). For more information about Alkalimat, visit his website at alkalimat.org.

At 8 p.m., Alkalimat will answer questions from the audience, followed by a reception, which will conclude by 9 p.m.

Select Wednesdays in February: Black Experience Film Series

1 p.m., Wednesdays, Feb. 6, 20, and 27
Hawthorn Hall, Room 200

Join us during Black History Month for our annual film series exploring black culture through film. Hosted by the Black Student Union on select Wednesdays in February, the campus will view three powerful one-hour films describing the black experience in America. Light refreshments provided.

This year’s films include:

  • February 6: bell hooks: Cultural Criticism & Transformation
    • bell hooks is one of America's most accessible public intellectuals. In this two-part video, extensively illustrated with many of the images under analysis, she makes a compelling argument for the transformative power of cultural criticism.
  • February 20: Souls of Black Girls: Image of Women of Color in the Media
    • Filmmaker Daphne Valerius's award-winning documentary The Souls of Black Girls explores how media images of beauty undercut the self-esteem of African-American women.
  • February 27: 70 Acres in Chicago: Cabrini Green
    • Filmed over a period of 20 years, this film chronicles the demolition of Chicago's Cabrini Green public housing development, the clearing of an African-American community, and the building of mixed-income communities on the valuable land where Cabrini once stood.

Feb. 13: Black Cultural Event: Business Fair/Art Exhibit/Poetry Slam/Soul Food

11:30 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 13
Gallery for Contemporary Art, Savannah Center, and the Moraine Student Center

As part of the campus celebration of Black History Month, the campus will host an event celebrating Black culture.

The event will include a Black Business Fair with local business sharing information in the Savannah Center Hallway, an art exhibit in the Gallery for Contemporary Art in the Savannah Center, poetry performed by students and authentic soul food served in the Moraine Student Center.

The free event begins at 11:30 a.m. in the Moraine Student Center with food served at noon. The gallery will open at noon and remain open until 5 p.m. The business fair will take place between noon and 2:30 p.m.

Feb. 19: Black Labor Week Men’s Panel Discussion

5 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 19
John W. Anderson Library Conference Center, Room 105

As part of the United Steel Worker’s Black Labor Week activities, join us as the BSU hosts a men’s panel discussion regarding issues of concern on topics affecting African American men including work environment, the prison industrial complex and its impact on opportunity, and much more. Light refreshments served at 5 p.m., the program begins at 6 p.m.

Feb. 20: Black Labor Week Women’s Panel Discussion

5 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 20
John W. Anderson Library Conference Center, Room 105

As part of the United Steel Worker’s Black Labor Week activities, join us as the BSU hosts a women’s panel discussion regarding issues of concern on topics affecting African American women in the workplace including career opportunity and professional development, glass ceilings, and much more. Light refreshments served at 5 p.m., the program begins at 6 p.m.

Feb. 22, 23: South Shore Dance Alliance Nubian Odyssey

1 p.m. and 7 p.m., Friday, Feb. 22
7 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 23
Theater at the Arts & Sciences Building

The South Shore Dance Alliance (SSDA) will perform The Nubian Odyssey. The Nubian Odyssey shares the journey of a Swahili Princess and the Maasai Warrior Prince to whom she was betrothed. Torn apart at their wedding by a brutal attack by Portuguese slavers, the ballet chronicles the efforts of the prince to retrieve his bride from the slavers before she reaches Bagamoyo; known to the indigenous as “the place people go never to return.” All performances are free and open to the public.

For more information on these events, contact Debi Qualls at (219) 980-6781 or email daqualls@iun.edu.


Indiana University Northwest

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