Social Action Project – Black History Month

We have been looking at role models and campaign strategies for spreading awareness of different illnesses. We started off looking at different black role models in support of Black History Month. We were all given an envelope which contained a picture and a name of a black role model. I, along with a friend, got a woman called Josephine Baker who is an exotic dancer who devoted her time to protesting for Black Rights. We then went about making a promotional poster to say what she does and give an inspirational quote she has said while protesting. We now display everyone’s work of this activity on the wall at the back. This activity was to show how and why people got their word out, made their opinions clear to change a matter for the better or for the worst.WP_20170111_15_09_18_Pro.jpg

All we had when beginning our research was a name, which from there we could look up a backstory, images, quotes, anything that can help us to why we were given this name. In her early life she became an exotic dancer at the age of 19 in 1925 and stared in her first film, ‘Siren of the Tropics’, in 1927. She then stared in 2 other films, ‘Zouzou’ in 1934 and ‘Princess Tam Tam’ in 1935. During World War 2, when France responded to Germany invading Poland by declaring war, Josephine was recruited into the Deuxième Bureau, a French Military Intelligence, as an ‘honourable correspondent’. She went undercover to parties where Nazi leaders were being entertained. She would get as much information about Nazi plans as possible to send back to the Allies and use them as a weapon.

After the war she became a Civil Rights Activist as she was rejected by 36 hotels in New York so she decided to do something about it. She spoke about this matter in a Miami Club but was given hate in return from the audience and started to get threatening phone calls from unknown people. She went about changing policies and started to get a reputation and soon spoke alongside Martin Luther King .Jr. As her life was coming to an end she lost her castle to unpaid debt and moved into an apartment in Monaco. Her last show in 1975 was held in Paris to honour her 50-year anniversary in show business. Her show had amazing reviews and 4 days later she was found in bed, surrounded by all the reviews, in a comatose state. She was taken to the hospital but died on 12th April 1975 at the age of 68.

I couldn’t put her life story onto the poster as we were limited in what we were allowed to say and the space we had so we gave a brief description of what she did and a quote to give the reader an idea of what type of person she was. I created this post to give evidence on researching which I will be doing in my main Social Action Project. Obviously I will need a lot more research on my chosen topic to make a structured argument when making the project but this is just a taster of what I can do.

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