Dialect Magazine

Kwanzaa: Celebrate African American Heritage during the Holiday Season

The first Kwanzaa celebration took place in 1966 as a product of the Black Power Movement. Created by Professor Maulana Karenga it was meant to show pride and solidarity among African Americans and people of African descent and is not a religious holiday but runs December 26- Jan 1st. Kwanzaa incorporates seven principles of Kawaida, which is Swahili for tradition and reason.

The seven principles of Kwanzaa are:
1) Umoja – Unity
2) Kujichagulia – Self Determination
3) Ujima – Collective Work and Responsibility
4) Ujamaa – Cooperative Economics
5) Nia – Economics
6) Kuumba – Creativity
7) Imani – Faith

Gifts are usually given just to the children on Jan 1st but should include a book and something to reflect the African/African American Heritage. Some well-known authors of African-American children books include James Berry, Arna Wendell Bontemps and Ashley Bryan.

Helping create memories and traditions that will last a lifetime is what the holiday season is all about!



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