Afrofuturism and "Not Your Momma's History"

Dear Gentle Reader,

My name is Cheyney McKnight , I’m an Afrofuturist, Artist, Historical Interpreter, and public historian. I wanted to introduce myself to newcomers and reintroduce myself to those who have been with us for a while. A lot of things are changing at Not Your Momma’s History. The clothing is most noticeable I’m sure, but there will be implements from throughout the diaspora that may seem out of place in the spaces I occupy, but I assure you that all is exactly where it is meant to be

I consider myself to be an Afrofuturist.  I know you’ve heard that term thrown around a lot recently.  According to Afrofuturist Ingrid LaFeur “Afrofuturism is a way of imagining possible futures through a Black cultural lens”.   

So how is going to historic sites and some of them sites of enslavement be considered Afrofuturism?  Sankofa, is a word in the Twi language of the Akan people of modern day Ghana, it means to go back and fetch it.  Essentially,  to look to the past to inform the future. I live my life in the future, I just believe that the key to an even brighter future is in fully understanding and teaching about the past, especially the culture and experiences of the ancestors.

You may have noticed that we have changed our existing lectures to include the present and future, and we have added a few more programs, lectures, and demonstrations in order to more fully integrate Afrofuturism into our programing.  If you have come to our website or social media to experience the past exactly how it was lived 100 to 200 years ago, you have come to the wrong place. We are not building our programming to be an exact replica of the past or a reimagined past, but an imagined future of how Black folks who are descended from enslaved Africans can engage with the past on their terms, and not for the pleasure of the white gaze. 

A Note on Our Social Media

On NYMH social medias I will do what I love and what brings me joy, cooking, story telling and designing garments.  Exploring the methods of my ancestors while combining them with implements of the future.  The priority is on the care and well being of the descendants of chattel slavery in the Americas.  The priority is not the education of white people, but I think by voicing and showing what we need as descendants can make a difference in how they do allyship.  Many of my colleagues are doing amazing work in educating people on the full history of the Americas, and you will see them throughout our social media. 

I educate people at historic sites across the US, but on our social media platforms I am prioritizing myself and my people.  In this space we are nowhere and everywhere. Y’all ended up in an Awkward Black woman’s brain, you’re welcome.

Love and Peace,

Cheyney McKnight

Cheyney's Patreon Page

Not Your Momma's History