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The Hamilton Friendship Association with Cuba Marks Black History Month 2013:

Nelson Mandela: A Tribute
Madiba Is Gone, the Struggle Continues

Guest Speaker: Dr. Afua Cooper, Dalhousie University, Halifax
* Open Mic * Live Music * Poetry Readings * Refreshments *
Saturday, February 8 @ 3:00pm
Workers Art & Heritage Centre, 51 Stuart Street
$10/Pay What You Can – No One Turned Away

Marking Black History Month 2014, the Hamilton Friendship Association (HFAC) with Cuba pays tribute to the life and work of legendary freedom fighter, Nelson Mandela (1918-2013). Known affectionately to many by his clan name, Madiba, Mandela passed away at the age of 95 on December 5 in Johannesburg. In marking Mandela’s passing, we recognize and celebrate the historic achievement of the South African people in defeating apartheid. We also honour the memory of all those who dedicated their lives to the anti-colonial, anti-racism and liberation struggles that swept the world after World War II. Due to its important contributions to the defeat of the Southern African apartheid regime, Cuba was the first country outside of Africa that Mandela chose to visit after his release from prison. During his speech on that occasion in 1991, Mandela states that Cubans "have made a contribution to African independence, freedom, and justice unparalleled for its principles and selfless character."

Program: Join us for an unforgettable program that will include tributes to Mandela through speeches, poetry, music, art and a presentation by guest speaker, Dr. Afua Cooper from Dalhousie University, Halifax. We welcome you to share your tribute to Mandela during the Open Mic portion of the program. Stay tuned for further details!

Guest Speaker Biography: Dr. Afua Cooper, James Robinson Johnston Chair in Black Studies Dalhousie University, Halifax. Dr. Cooper holds a Ph.D. in Black Canadian Studies and the African Diaspora from the University of Toronto. Her expertise includes African Canadian culture, Black women’s history, gender, slavery, abolition, and freedom, Black literatures, education, and Black agency and political consciousness. She has conducted research on African-ascended people and their culture across Canada, and internationally in Jamaica, France, the United States, Britain, Senegal, and Ethiopia. Her co-authored publication We’re Rooted Here and They Can’t Pull Us Up: Essays in African Canadian Women’s History won the Joseph Brant prize for the best history book. Her ground-breaking book on Canadian slavery, The Hanging of Angelique: The Untold Story of Slavery in Canada and the Burning of Old Montreal was nominated for the Governor General’s award. Afua has curated and worked on five exhibits including, The Underground Railroad, Next Stop Freedom, Enslaved Africans in Upper Canada, and The Transatlantic Slave Trade. Further, Dr. Cooper served as the co-ordinator and chief knowledge officer of the Ontario Initiative to Commemorate the Bicentenary of the British Slave Trade Abolition, in 2007.

An acclaimed and celebrated poet, Dr. Afua Cooper’s expertise in and contributions to the arts, history, and education were recognized when she was presented in 2005 with the Harry Jerome Award for Professional Excellence. Through her outstanding work and practice as a poet, she helped to centre dub poetry in Canada and beyond, and co-founded the Dub Poets Collective. She has published five books of poetry, including the critically acclaimedCopper Woman and Other Poems, and the award-winning Memories Have Tongue. She has recorded her poems on two CDs Sunshine and Worlds of Fire. Afua is currently working on a new CD of poetry with Dub master King Culture as producer. Her poetry has a strong sense of memory, history, place, and spirituality. Further, Afua has published two historical novels, which have garnered Canadian and American awards. Her work in the creative arts has been recognized with the Premier of Ontario Award for Excellence in the Arts, and internationally with the Beacon of Freedom Award (recently awarded for her book My Name is Phillis Wheatley). She was named byEssence Magazine as one of the twenty-five women who are shaping the world.

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