The mission of the Black Writers Museum is to provide a venue and forum for the public to explore, celebrate, and experience the wonders of writing and reading through the exhibition and study of Black Literature. Our mission is to inspire and cultivate another generation of writers, public speakers and literary giants that will tell the story of history as seen through their eyes and expressed in their vernacular.
If you agree with, and would like to help us drive this mission, please become a Volunteer and "Friend of the BWM," by completing the Volunteer form. We offer a variety of opportunities. Programs, events, tour guides, activities with youth and children, book clubs, poetry readings and fundraisers are just several of the ways to help us drive our mission. Your support is vital in assuring that this institution provides the best that there is in Black Literature. We welcome your efforts.
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Throughout the history of America the presence of Black writing has been prominent. Indeed ingrained in the very fabric of American history has been the literary eloquence and vigor of Black prose and verse. Black literary arts have proven to have been an integral element of America's social and political transformation. During every period of American contradiction and struggle, Black writers have exposed on paper what the country and world refused to publicly acknowledge. The literary works of many Black men and women entrapped in America's storied past have provided the framework for America's present human rights progress and civil discourse.
America has a long way to go in reaching the righteous pinnacle of equality for all, particularly Black people; therefore, we need a new generation of readers and writers that will pen the story of our love, struggle, life and progress. It is the duty of all adults to model and inspire our youth to read and write well. Reading expands one's vocabulary, enhances writing skills and provides a venue of relief from the present chaos of now. Writing for many is transformative; it channels innovation and creativity, and forges relationships and understanding. We, that is, adults, owe this gift to youth, to ourselves, and to those who don't have the knowledge, resource, or wherewithal to appreciate the value of writing and reading.
There was a time in American history when Black people were denied the human right to read or write. But, because of the innate drive to satisfy the unquenchable thirst for self determination, our ancestors taught themselves how to read and write in righteous defiance of the law, and in the face of fatal repercussions. Now, in the dawn of the 21st century we struggle with our youth to get off social media sites and pick up a book, or write a loved one a letter. As the world evolves, we must not allow our values to become extinct. Proper grammar and sentence structure are paramount in lucid communication. Slang, cultural vernacular and poetic license can be effective means of communication, and the value of such must be respected. Yet, in this day and age of urban under and mis-education it is imperative that our children are prepared in the highest regard to be successful contributing world citizens. And, writing and reading are fundamental tools necessary to achieve personal, soulful and career success.
If we don't write our feelings, our dilemmas, our predicament, our struggle, our history, who will? Who can we trust, other than ourselves to chronicle our place in world history? To whom shall we leave the task of writing truth to those in power? How can a people survive without this venerable tool of communication? For millennia Black people have utilized writing for not only a means of self expression, but of self introspection, therapy, self control, preparation, and protest. We can't stop now! We must plant the seed, cultivate another thought, and raise another giant. Raise not one, but many that will contribute to the one giant story of our people. Black people are a people of substance, ingenuity, and architecture. We live a story of accomplishment, credential, grandeur and greatness, stress and struggle, resistance and resilience. We live in the present as proof of the aforementioned and we must prepare our children to continue along the path cleared by literary giants who have commissioned us to blaze trails of change. Love our young and teach them to read better. Embrace our youth and teach them to write well. It is our duty and obligation, for "Writers are the Narrators of History."
Supreme D. Dow
Founder and Executive Director
Black Writers Museum