multicultural

  Over the past half-century, the U.S. has seen profound demographic and cultural change. But racial progress still seems distant. After the faith of the civil rights movement, the fervor of multiculturalism, and even the brief euphoria of a “post-racial” moment, we remain a nation divided. Resegregation is the norm.

The culture wars flare as hot as ever. How do Americans see race now? Do we see each other any more clearly than before?

In Who We Be: A Cultural History of Race in Post-Civil Rights America, Jeff Chang, the award-winning author of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation, looks anew at the tumultuous half-century from the peak of the civil rights era to the colorization and strife of the Obama years.

We have come to that point in our nationhood, where our cohesion is at serious risk.  To paraphrase John Dunne, no one of us is an island, entire to itself; everyone is a part of the main, because we are all involved in humankind.  He was right, because in Latin, ‘homo’ translates as a male or female person or fellow creature.  Yet, despite all of our inclusive rhetoric, there are still those among us, who would reverse the democratic process in this fragile democracy to the most despicable meaning of “State’s Rights,” in which those of color are excluded and denied inclusion, except as sub-human members of the work-herd, as the ‘State’s-Right’ politicos once considered them.

    

  Kingston’s Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History is sponsoring the second annual Kingston Community Block Party on June 8th from noon to 4pm at Kingston's T.R. Gallo West Strand Park. The multicultural festival is a free, family-friendly, multicultural festival which will feature live ethnic music, dance and comedy, along with handicrafts and children’s activities, including arts and crafts, games, singing and storytelling.

Here to tell us more are Geoff Miller, chairman of Kingston’s Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History, and Gerry Harrington.

Members of MCLA’s The Allegrettos sang to welcome the announcement that the Lift Ev’ry Voice Festival is returning for its second season beginning in June.

The festival, which will again feature special events and performances celebrating the African-American culture and heritage in the Berkshires, was first held in 2011, and was attended by more than 30,000 people.

Festival co-chair Don Quinn Kelly said that the festival will focus on making the special programs and events accessible to attendees of all racial and economic backgrounds.