Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue
Text reads: Curated Resource Guide. Black History Month.

Black History Month

February is Black History Month (also known as African American History Month). This annual celebration highlights the people, events, and histories of the Black community in the United States and internationally.

Half a century after the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, Carter G. Woodson and Jesse E. Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in September 1915. Known today as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the organization focused on researching and promoting the achievements of Black Americans and others from the African diaspora. The group sponsored a national Negro History week in 1926 during the second week of February to coincide with Abraham Lincoln’s and Frederick Douglass’ birthdays. The celebration gained popularity by the late 1960s, and in 1976, President Gerald R. Ford, Jr. officially recognized Black History Month nationally.

To recognize and celebrate this month, CEHHS curated a list of resources centering Black voices and stories. These resources are available through the UT Library and online.

BHM 2023 Theme

Each year, the President of the United States designates February as Black History Month and endorses a theme. The 2023 theme is “Black Resistance.” This theme highlights how Black and African American people have resisted historic and ongoing oppression through sit-ins, nonviolence education, legislation, and other forms of protest. Through this year’s theme, you can learn how these forms of resistance have effects on all aspects of life from music and sports to education and voting rights. Learn more about this year’s theme through the ASALH website.

Black Voices

The resources below feature some of the voices in the Black community through different media formats. Bolded resources signify those written/created by Black individuals.

An African American and Latinx History of the United States | Physical Book – Paul Ortiz

A Black Women’s History of the United States | E-Book – Daina Berry and Kali Gross

Four Hundred Souls | Physical Book – Ibram X. Kendi (Ed.) and Keisha Blain (Ed.)

How the Word Is Passed | Physical Book – Clint Smith

The Warmth of Other Suns | Physical Book – Isabel Wilkerson

African American Poetry: 250 Years of Struggle & Song | Poetry – Kevin Young (Ed.)

Call Us What We Carry | Poetry – Amanda Gorman

James Baldwin: Collected Essays | Essays – James Baldwin

Wandering in Strange Lands | Essays – Morgan Jerkins

The Yellow House | Memoir – Sarah Broom

Americanah | Physical Book – Chimamanda Adichie

Felix Ever After | Physical Book – Kacen Callender

Love in Colour | Physical Book – Bolu Babalola

The Nickel Boys | Physical Book – Colson Whitehead

The Vanishing Half | Physical Book – Brit Bennett

Code Switch | National Public Radio

Historically Black | American Public Media

The Read | Kid Fury and Crissle

The Secret Adventures of Black People | Nichole Hill

The Stoop | Hana Baba and Leila Day

Updated February 2023 by Miranda N. Rutan, Doctoral Student, CEHHS DEI, UT Knoxville | Curated February 2022 by Miranda N. Rutan, Doctoral Student, CEHHS DEI, UT Knoxville