Black History Month – Day 8
Today we celebrate Josephine Baker!
Model: Mariah Williams
Hair: Natalee McGowan
Special thanks to Syracuse Antiques Exchange for lending us the faux fur wrap, earrings and bracelet!
“What Josephine Baker means to me: She inspires me to reflect on the things that make myself and the ones around me smile, in spite of the fact that there’s so much to be sad about. She reminds me to not fixate upon the things that are out of my control and instead to do everything in my power concerning the things that are. She is grace. She is strength. She is fun. She is what I aspire to be able to look at myself in the mirror and see reflected back at me.” – Mariah Williams
Singer and dancer Josephine Baker was one of the most successful black performers in French history. She used her popularity and her platform to help bring change to the world. During WWII she acted as a spy for the French Resistance, writing confidential messages in invisible ink on her music sheets. After the war was over she was awarded both the Croix de Guerre and the Legion of Honour with the rosette of the Resistance, two of France’s highest military honors. During the 1950s, she often came home to America for performances and helped to fight segregation and racism while she was here. She refused to perform at venues that were segregated, participated in demonstrations and even spoke at the March on Washington in 1963. She believed in cultural harmony and adopted 13 children from various countries, calling her family “the rainbow tribe.” “All my life, I have maintained that the people of the world can learn to live together in peace if they are not brought up in prejudice.”- Josephine Baker