“We have internalized our own oppression. We will forever be slaves unless we free our minds.” -Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. yesterday on African-Americans
Yesterday I was so blessed to go see Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. speak at Georgia State University’s Rialto. It was truly awesome. If you’re unfamiliar with Dr. Gates, you may recognize him from African American Lives and Faces of America. He’s worked with everyone from Oprah Winfrey, Chris Rock, Eva Longoria Parker and Meryl Streep.
Dr. Gates specializes in genealogy and has had a particular interest in it since he was nine. He explained in his speech that he wanted to do what Alex Haley (the author of Roots) did for himself. And so that’s just what he did. And he went on to do it for several other incredibly influential people as well.
Dr. Gates is also looking to revolutionize this science of genealogy and take it to inner city kids so they too can know where they come from, who they are and still master science and history.
“Your favorite subject is yourself,” Gates explained. “What kid wouldn’t want to learn about science and history through themselves?”
I think this was hands down one of my greatest experiences ever. I got witness someone, who my kids will read about in history books and watch on Black History Month specials, speak and actually teach me something. Amazing. Inspiring.