When you hear the name "RUNOKO RASHIDI" and you have any savvy of African History whatsoever, you know it refers to one of the most prolific and erudite Black historian and expert on African/Asian history.
He's traveled the world and made it his lifelong mission to study and reveal little known historical linkages between Africa and Asia, as well as to debunk the many negative myths that have been built up over centuries of lies and propaganda about who we are as a people.
If you are in DC or Philadelphia, Runoko Rashidi will be in your area on December 4 and December 5, respectively:
December 4 in DC at the Davis Center - 6218 Third Street, NW from 7:00P - 10:00P
Tickets $10.00; Children under 12 admitted free; for info call 202.256.2518
December 5 in Philadelphia at the Thomas W. Harvey Memorial Division 121
1609 Cecil B. Moore Avenue, 7:00P - 10:00P
Tickets $15.00 Children under 12 admitted Free; for info call 215.236.7410
Food, books and other items will be available at both venues
For the uninitiated, or those who are new to Black studies, let me share a brief overview about brother Runoko Rashidi:
Runoko Rashidi is an anthropologist and historian with a major focus on what he calls the Global African Presence--that is, Africans outside of Africa before and after enslavement. He is the author or editor of eighteen books, the most recent of which are Black Star: The African Presence in Early Europe, published by Books of Africa in London in November 2011 and African Star over Asia: The Black Presence in the East, published by Books of Africa in London in November 2012 and revised and reprinted in April 2013. His other works include the African Presence in Early Asia, co-edited by the late Dr. Ivan Van Sertima. Four of his works have been published in French. His two major forthcoming works are: The Ivan Van Sertima Papers: The Global African Presence and Everywhere We Are: The Global African Presence by Runoko Rashidi.
As a traveler and researcher Dr. Rashidi has visited 103 countries. As a lecturer and presenter, he has spoken in fifty-seven countries.
Runoko has worked with and under some of the most distinguished scholars of our generation, including Ivan Van Sertima, John Henrik Clarke, Asa G. Hilliard, Edward Scobie, John G. Jackson, Jan Carew and Yosef ben-Jochannan.
In 2005 Rashidi was awarded an Honorary Doctorate degree by the Amen-Ra Theological Seminary in Los Angeles.
In October 1987 Rashidi inaugurated the First All-India Dalit Writer's Conference in Hyderabad, India.
In 1999 he was the major keynote speaker at the International Reunion of the African Family in Latin America in Barlovento, Venezuela.
In August 2010 he was first keynote speaker at the First Global Black Nationalities Conference in Osogbo, Nigeria.
In December 2010 he was President and first speaker at the Diaspora Forum at the FESMAN Conference in Dakar, Senegal.
He is currently pursuing a major work on the African presence in the museums of the world.
As a tour leader he has taken groups to India, Australia, Fiji, Turkey, Jordan, Brazil, Egypt, Ghana, Togo, Benin, France, Belgium, England, the Netherlands, Spain, Morocco, Senegal, the Gambia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Myanmar.
Runoko Rashidi's major mission in life is the uplift of African people, those at home and those abroad. He is the official Traveling Ambassador for Marcus Garvey's Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League, currently in its 100th year of service.
I first met Dr. Rashidi at a Black Books event, shortly after he had appeared on "Like It Is," hosted by Gil Noble (PBUH), in New York City. I was so impressed with his knowledge of African/Asian history I wanted to hear more. My father had had a set of books entitled the AfroAsian Encyclopedia, which dated back to the 1920's that clearly linked so many things that we both had in common. I had lost track of the book and wanted to find out if there was indeed more to our historicity than those few volumes - especially as it related to Africa and Japan.
We had a lively discussion during the panel, which led to a further discussion after the event, corroborating a great deal of what I had learned growing up.
Dr. Rashidi has written nearly 20 books - they are easy to read and information rich. He himself, is low key, knowledgeable, easy to talk to, and a treasure trove of information.
You owe it to yourself to take the time to sit with this great brother as he continues to expand our knowledge of who we are in this world.
Stay Blessed &