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November 2021
Monthly news from the Billie Holiday Project
What's New at BHPLA?

Minkah Makalani's Worlds of Hip-Hop: Helena Hicks Emancipation School Series
November 18th, 6:30pm, Union Baptist Church: Honoring Baltimore’s living legend Helena Hicks, our fall lecture series features 40-minute presentations from the Johns Hopkins faculty. Professor Minkah Makalani, Director of the JHU Center for Africana Studies, will present the mini-course, "Worlds of Hip Hop", which explores the evolution of hip-hop culture. Registered participants of all three mini-courses will receive a certificate of completion from the JHU Helena Hicks Emancipation School. Register

Metropolitan Church celebrates 196-year history
The Holiday Center's Community Archives Program (CAP) team, comprised of Megan McShea, Tonika Berkley, Angela Rodgers-Koukoui, Deyane Moses and Bria Warren, with assistance by Christina Thomas, have worked over the past several months with Metropolitan's Senior Pastor and history committee to create an inventory of documents, programs, church relics, and photographs from the churches archives. Most recently, the CAP team assisted with updating Metropolitan’s exhibition hall by reorganizing the exhibition cases, installing new labels and lighting, displaying church banners and curating media stations showcasing church events in anticipation of Metropolitan’s Annual Gala on November 13 & 14, celebrating the church’s 196th anniversary.

Fellows & Staff lend technical assistance to the Afro Newspaper Archives
Our Community Archives Team assisted Afro Charities with verifying their inventory of 600+ boxes with the box labels, assembling archival quality boxes, labeling the boxes and rehousing the materials in preparation for transport to a new archival storage facility.

Artist-in-Residence D. Watkins to pilot new game for youth
In addition to working on his latest nonfiction book project, renowned Baltimore writer D. Watkins has utilized his artist residency to develop a game experience for young men and boys that is designed to inspire personal and critical examination of attitudes about black masculinity. Through moderated group dialogue, the game also aims to foster productive dialogue about healthy male relationships.

Fellowship/Assistantship Opportunities for Graduate Students in the Humanities and Social Sciences

The Holiday Project is sponsoring two year-long assistantships for graduate students: (1) Johns Hopkins-Morgan State University Graduate Teaching Fellowship (starting Fall 2022) for advanced doctoral students interested in contributing to innovative course development using Africana archives and object-based teaching; and (2) Johns Hopkins-HBCU Graduate Assistantships for Programming and Digital Publishing open to MA and PhD students at JHU, Morgan State University, Coppin State University, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, and Bowie State University to support symposium planning, oral history compilation, and publishing of the “Baltimore Africana Archives” catalog. Applications will be posted on the Billie Holiday Center's website in January 2022. For immediate information, contact Prof. Kali-Ahset Amen at

November 4th, Billie Holiday Center and Friends in the Community! Fellows and Staff visited with the co-founders of the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum to learn about the museum's approach to Black historical narrative, sustaining black cultural institutions, and keeping the love of black heritage alive in Baltimore City.
Upcoming Black Humanities Events at JHU
The JHU Center for Africana Studies Screens the New Film "Passing"
November 10th, 5:00pm: Join The Center for Africana Studies for an in-person screening of the film "Passing" in Gilman Hall 132. Based on Nella Larsen's 1929 novel by the same name, the film brings to the screen a classic in black literature that captures the drama, personal costs, and history that confronted those whose complexions allowed them, for various reasons, to "pass" as white. Find out more about this event here.
Events Around Town and Online
Language of the Soul & Ball in Transition
Open through November 20th: See Thebe Phetogo's & Brandon Donahue's exhibition that explores disembodied segments of post-colonial African historical subjects. Find more information here.

Third Annual Lecture for Education, Justice & Ethics
November 11th, 5:30pm: The Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. Center for Education, Justice & Ethics will be hosting their Third Annual Lecture in a hybrid format. The lecture will recognize the work of several organizations dedicated to defending the rights of victims, returning citizens, and the wrongfully convicted. Learn more and register here.

BRAVE: Art in Times of Crisis
November 13th, 7:30pm: See Baltimore's Full Circle Dance Company at Baltimore Theatre Project. The performance will explore issues that matter right now in Baltimore and beyond including, the role of protest in democracy, the history behind persistent inequality, and the courage of citizens who stand up to injustice.

By The Way, Meet Vera Stark

November 13th, 8:00pm: The Colonial Players of Annapolis is excited to present their production, By The Way, Meet Vera Stark. The production stars a headstrong African American maid and aspiring starlet.  Learn more and see additional showtimes here.

This monthly newsletter was sent on behalf of the
Billie Holiday Project for Liberation Arts

Johns Hopkins University
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
3400 North Charles Street, Gilman 90A, Baltimore, MD 21218 

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Billie Holiday Project for Liberation Arts · Johns Hopkins University · 3400 N. Charles St. Wyman, Gilman 90 · Baltimore, Md 21218 · USA

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