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Femi  Lewis

What is Kwanzaa?

By December 31, 2012

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In 1966, Dr. Maulana Karenga established the celebration of Kwanzaa. Since then, the annual celebration has been a way for African-Americans and other members of the African Diaspora to embrace and reaffirm their heritage.

From December 26 to January 1, African-Americans celebrate the seven principles of Kwanzaa, which include:

  1. Umoja (Unity): maintaining unity as a family, community and race of people.
  2. Kujichagulia (Self Determination): defining, naming and creating and speaking for ourselves.
  3. Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility): building and maintaining our community--solving problems together.
  4. Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics: building and maintaining retail stores and other businesses and to profit from these ventures.
  5. Nia (Purpose): work collectively to build communities that will restore the greatness of African people.
  6. Kuumba (Creativity): to find new, innovative ways to leave communities of African descent in more beautiful and beneficial ways than the community inherited.
  7. Imani (Faith): the belief in God, family, heritage, leaders and others that will leave to the victory of Africans around the world.

Today marks Kuumba, also known as creativity. It is the last day of 2012. I hope you, readers, are using this day to find new, innovative ways to build the strength of your families and communities.


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