Editors’ Picks: Books, movies, TV to celebrate Black History Month


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February is Black History Month, where we raise awareness of and celebrate African American contributions throughout history. Where sometimes textbooks are lacking, Black History Month seeks to fill those gaps and create a space to discuss the influential African American figures and achievements that changed the world we live in today.

Black History Month is also a time to celebrate diversity — diversity in the makeup of the American people, in our cultures and in how our perspectives on the world all differ from each other.

It is important to study and learn about the facts of African American history during Black History Month. It is also important during the month to recognize the creative contributions that come from African Americans and stem from African American history.

Creative works allow us to understand the diversity and history Black History Month celebrates and raises awareness of by delving straight into it and allowing us to see the world firsthand through perhaps a different lens than what we are used to.

Where seeking out literature and films by and about African Americans should always be a necessity, Black History Month is a time to truly give ourselves an opportunity to celebrate with a sense of urgency and togetherness the history and diversity that can be found in reading books, poems and stories, and watching films, documentaries and series about African American people and history.

All these mediums allow readers or viewers to fully engage in a story and to take a walk in someone else’s shoes. Whether the narrating perspectives are historical or modern, Black History Month allows us to recognize these contributions and celebrate them all.

The Parthenon staff have listed some of the things they are reading and watching this February to celebrate and commemorate Black History Month.

Books Movies TV Shows

“I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”     

by Maya Angelou

“Fruitvale Station”

directed by Ryan Coogler



“Phenomenal Woman”

a poem by Maya Angelou


directed by Ava DuVernay

“The United Shades of America”


“Between the World and Me”

by Ta-Nehisi Coates


directed by Vikram Gandhi



“Black Faces, White Spaces”

by Carolyn Finney


directed by Barry Jenkins



“To Kill a Mockingbird”

by Harper Lee

“The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman”     

directed by John Korty



“The Color of Water”

by James McBride

“Hidden Figures”

directed by Theodore Melfi



“The Coldest Winter Ever”

by Sister Souljah

“The Birth of a Nation (2016)”

directed by Nate Parker

“Luke Cage”


“The Help”

by Kathryn Stockett

“Dear White People”

directed by Justin Simien

“The Get Down”


“The Underground Railroad”

by Colson Whitehead


directed by Denzel Washington


TV One


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