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Black August (commemoration)

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American prisoner artist, C-Note's, 2016, ink on paper artwork, Black August - Los Angeles.

Black August is an annual commemoration and prison-based holiday to remember Black political prisoners, Black freedom struggles in the United States and beyond, and to highlight Black resistance against racial, colonial and imperialist oppression. It takes place during the entire calendar month of August.[1]

Black August was initiated by the Black Guerilla Family in San Quentin State Prison in 1979 when a group of incarcerated people came together to commemorate the deaths of brothers Jonathan P. Jackson (d. August 7, 1970) and George Jackson (d. August 21, 1971) at San Quentin State Prison.[2] [3]

Impact in culture and the arts[edit]

Black August as a cultural movement has had a significant impact in the arts. The 2008 film Black August (film) focuses on the experiences of prison activist George Jackson. A book named Black August: 1619 – 2019 by Gloria Verdieu released in 2019. The Black Collective launched the Black August Mixtape in 2019. In visual art, the virtual exhibition "Black August" opened at the Crenshaw Dairy Mart in 2020.[4][5][6] [7] [8]

Dates celebrated or commemorated during Black August[edit]


  1. ^ Kaur, Harmeet (3 August 2020). "Activists are commemorating Black August. Here's the history behind the month-long celebration". CNN. Retrieved 2020-08-14.
  2. ^ Berger, Dan (2014). The Struggle Within: Prisons, Political Prisoners, and Mass Movements in the United States. PM Press. ISBN 978-1-60486-955-2.
  3. ^ "Celebrate Black August". Critical Resistance. Retrieved 2020-10-31.
  4. ^ "Black August". Crenshaw Dairy Mart. Retrieved 2022-08-02.
  5. ^ "'Whose Streets?' director Damon Davis curates 'Black August' resistance art at L.A. upstart". Los Angeles Times. 6 August 2020. Retrieved 2022-08-02.
  6. ^ Verdieu, Gloria (2019). Black August: 1619-2019. Independently Published. ISBN 9781672426886.
  7. ^ Teodros, Gabriel (2 August 2019). "Black August Mixtape". KEXP-FM (Podcast). Music That Matters. Retrieved 29 July 2022.
  8. ^ Hooker, Donald (25 June 2022). "Black August Through the Eyes of Incarcerated Artist Donald 'C-Note' Hooker". C-Note. Retrieved 2022-07-29.
  9. ^ University, © Stanford; Stanford; California 94305 (2017-06-12). "Watts Rebellion (Los Angeles)". The Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute. Retrieved 2023-07-10.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ "International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition". unesco.org. Retrieved 2023-07-10.