The struggle of Black history museums and cultural spaces
The DuSable Museum of African American History in Chicago.
Photograph by Olu Akintorin Jr. Image courtesy of DuSable Museum.
In this feature for the Washington Post, Kelsey Ables spotlights the precarious position of some cultural heritage institutions that are committed to documenting Black history. Institutions that take preserving Black history as their task are chronically underfunded and the Covid-19 pandemic has only exacerbated these already-existing issues. However, these institutions are helmed by leaders who are passionate about staking a claim and memorializing Black people’s place in world history — with these leaders and communities coming together to help these spaces survive and hopefully thrive..
“We take seriously the idea that a museum should be doing some work. She should not just be there with some cute things on her wall. She should not prioritize collections of people. She should be about the people.” - Vashti DuBois