Black Iowa activist, TEDx speaker: 'Survival is our cultural ethos'

Black Iowans discuss the importance of Black History, voting rights and more during Black History Month.

Celebrating Black History Month: Black Iowa News invited Black Iowans to share their feelings about the importance of teaching Black history, voting rights and more — in their own words. Here’s the next installment from Abena Imhotep, director of Sankofa Literary & Empowerment Group, a triad that creates equitable spaces for lifelong learning centering the books and scholarship of Black authors, writers and scholars. The TEDx speaker is also a student at Drake University's Bright College. Check back tomorrow for the next installment. Want to share your views? Learn how below.

The Declaration

Abena Imhotep, director of Sankofa Literary & Empowerment Group, Des Moines

Abena Imhotep. Photo courtesy of Imhotep.

I believe in Black people. I believe in the African diaspora. I believe in the principle of "I am we," which is to say that I believe in the power of our umoja/unity and that we can accomplish whatsoever we will.

I believe we are a force for good and for justice.

I believe that our story and struggle are sacrosanct. I believe we can make it. Survival is our cultural ethos.

Read more about Imhotep and her experience at Drake University's Bright College:

Read: Black History Month reflections by Black Iowans

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Share your opinion with Black Iowa News for Black History Month

To celebrate Black History Month, Black Iowa News will publish short original quotes from Black Iowans on the topics of Black history and voting rights. Here's your chance to speak up about the issues you care about. Share your thoughts on Black history or voting rights by submitting your answers in the short Google Form below. It's quick and easy. Quotes will be published throughout the month of February on Black Iowa News and its social media sites. Having trouble using the form? Email your quote and photo to Dana James, founder of Black Iowa News:

Banner: Black History Month art by Christopher Harrison, of Harrison Art Studio.

"Masquerade 13" by Christopher Harrison, visual artist.

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