By Kristina Valdez
Black History Month ended weeks ago, but we are still celebrating the contributions Black Americans have made to music, literature and film and television.
For you, faithful Bundle reader, we have compiled a list of everything you should be reading, listening to and watching.
You Should Read:
1. Anything Written by Toni Morrison
American novelist Toni Morrison captures the grueling legacy of slavery in her fictional work. Her words leave our hearts aching as they remind us the past is not past us at all. Morrison is best known for her fictional novel “Beloved,” which won a Pulitzer Prize and the American Book Award in 1988.
2. “Hunger” and “Bad Feminist” by Roxanne Gay
Roxanne Gay uses her collection of essays to criticize social and cultural issues as she sees it. Her opinions don’t seek approval. While you are reading, you’ll think, “Finally, someone said it!”
3. “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.” – Alice Walker, The Color Purple
Through her character Celice, Alice Walker thoughtfully and affectionately gave the world a look inside the life of many black women. Walker won a Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. After reading, you’ll have a whole new appreciation for the wonderful color that is purple.
4. “There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce” by Morgan Parker
Parker uses her poetry to combine in eloquent and dramatic prose critiques of pop culture. The book is not about Beyonce, but more about the social stigmas that come with a celebrity like her.
You Should Watch:
1. “A Wrinkle in Time”
Director Ava DuVernay became to first black female director to direct a movie with a $100 million dollar budget. Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time” is currently in theaters and little girls have been lining up at the door to see a heroine who looks like them.
The second season of Donald Glover’s FX original and Emmy-winning show ‘Atlanta’ is already out. Glover’s character, Alfred Miles, is trying to make a name for himself in The Big Peach with his entourage managing and helping him along the way. Glover, fantastic and multi-talented, is adding depth and variety in how we consume television and music as Childish Gambino.
3. “The Butler”
Lee Daniel’s perspective of the middle-class black family from the eras of slavery, civil rights movement and the election of the first black president is humbling. Whitaker and Winfrey’s represent the plights of a usual family under the burden of being black in America and ties of the Oval Office.
4. “Hidden Figures”
Three black women who were the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history that launched John Glenn into orbit. Even though these women were brilliant, they had to fight for their work and ideas to be acknowledged at NASA. When the movie is over, everyone will want to wear glasses and own a piece of chalk.
You Should Listen:
1. “A Seat at the Table”
Solange Knowles’ album has 21 songs with features like “Don’t Touch My Hair” that speak to the black experience of many.
2. Gabrielle Union
On NPR, Union speaks about her new autobiography “We’re Going To Need More Wine” and her life experiences growing up black, as a rape survivor and working in the entertainment industry.
Billie Holiday’s soulful voice transformed blues. Her artistic and cultural influence continues today.
4. Michael Jackson
The great pop icon we love and adore cannot be forgotten and never will be.