Black History Month: Edwidge Danticat

by Victoria Cepeda

As we mark the beginning of Black History Month, we could have showcased countless of historical figures that are African Americans such as Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Oprah Winfrey, Maya Angelou, Alice Walker, Madam C.J. Walker (America’s first millionaire of any race) and so forth. After all, Black History month is an annual celebration of achievements by black Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of African Americans in U.S. history. However, I wanted to focus on writers that, for some reason or another, are not as well known within the Latino community. Thanks to Sasa Bella, a member of the Pa’lante familia, we can introduce you to Edwidge Danticat, a prime example of an author that deserves a special mention.

Ms. Danticat was born in Haiti in 1969 and migrated to the U.S. when she was twelve years old. As a young girl the experience of being uprooted from her neighborhood in Port-au-Prince to Brooklyn called for great determination to overcome taunting and falling prey to stereo types. She credits older folks back in her homeland for her writing and story telling techniques.  As a child she recalls listening to a particular lady tell stories for the whole block as kids, and adults alike, listened enthralled. Today Edwidge is considered to be the leading voice in her community and has been recognized with several awards like the Pushcart Short Story Prize and fiction awards from The Carribean Writer, Seventeen, and Essence magazines. To think that her parents would discourage her from dedicating herself to writing, to find a real career. Well, I am glad Edwidge followed her heart and plan on reading as many of her books as possible. Among her most notorious work of fiction are:

 Breath, Eyes, Memory

Krik? Krak! 

Brother, I’m Dying

Hail to our writers, hail to Ms. Danticat for  painting our world with color, flavor and cultural legacies from Haiti and incorporating it into main stream America.

Brief Bio:

Excerpt from the “Brother I am Dying:

Black History month:

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2 Responses to “Black History Month: Edwidge Danticat”

  1. I just wanted to inform you and your readers of this very important fact – Madame C.J. Walker’s historic company still exists today and has never stopped manufacturing all of the original hair oils! Please visit our website at to view and purchase the full product line. The website also contains valuable information about Raymond Randolph’s purchase of the original Madame C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company in 1985 from the Walker Trustees in Indianapolis, Indiana and how his family continues to keep Madame Walker’s “true” legacy alive. Due to our ownership of Madame’s historic company and the historical documents and memorabilia of the company, the Randolph Family can provide the most detailed and historically sound information about Madame C.J. Walker and her company by calling toll free, 866-552-2838 or going to the contact us page of our website. 

    Angela Randolph

  2. Dear Angela,

    Thank you so much for such valuable feedback and info. We truly appreciate it.

    If we showcase any further info on Madame C.J. Walker, we will definitely reach out. For the purpose of my blog, it was an honorable mention to an exemplary woman and a true entrepenuer at a time where women (or any color, or just by being women) were delegated to a second class citizen status.

    Best regards,
    Victoria Cepeda

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