Black National Anthem? - ProTeacher Community


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Black National Anthem?
Old 03-03-2012, 11:08 AM
 
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I hope I don't come across as ignorant, but at a recent Black History Month assembly a teacher had her class perform the Black National Anthem. I don't remember what the title of the song actually was, but I was totally shocked. Has anyone else heard of a Black National Anthem? Am I totally out of the loop?


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Yep
Old 03-03-2012, 11:10 AM
 
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I believe it's called "Lift Every Voice and Sing"--it's performed every year at my school.
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:12 AM
 
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Lift Every Voice And Sing is well known as the "black national anthem" and is often sung at Black History assemblies, especially if your school has a lath percentage of African American students.
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:18 AM
 
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Yes, this is sung at our school, too.
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:48 AM
 
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I have heard of it but only because I did some research once. I found a youtube video of four guys singing it a capella that I just love! Taught my class some sign language to do with it and we listened to the guys sing it while we did the signs. It was just too nice a song to "mess up" letting my firsties sing it.


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Old 03-03-2012, 12:18 PM
 
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Actually, our school has a large Latino population and I haven't ever taught anywhere with a large Black population.

Thanks for the info! I had no idea!
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:47 PM
 
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Yes, I learned of it as part of our Black History Month information. I have a learned a whole bunch about African American history because my kids are learning it too.
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Just wondering
Old 03-04-2012, 02:30 PM
 
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Quote:
I was totally shocked
What about it was shocking to you? Was it the lyrics?
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Shocked there was one
Old 03-04-2012, 03:42 PM
 
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That's what I got from her question. Perhaps more shocked she didn't know it existed!
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Old 03-05-2012, 04:05 AM
 
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I was shocked because I'd never heard of such a thing and had no idea it existed. Like I said, I've never taught at a school with a large Black population and our school is mostly Latino.
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Old 03-09-2012, 01:30 PM
 
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Interesting. Thanks for the information everybody.
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Black National Anthem
Old 03-13-2012, 06:15 AM
 
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I didn't know there was a black national anthem either. How very separate.

Our nation is the United States of America and as Americans of whatever race (data from our 2010 census indicates that over 40 % of Americans are of mixed race), shouldn't we be teaching the US national anthem at school/public events etc. to unite our country instead of singing "national" anthems for select groups? In my opinion, this is not only misleading students by being called a national anthem, it's also divisive.

On a video I saw, the song was introduced as the national anthem. That is not America's national anthem.
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i have sung...
Old 03-13-2012, 08:05 AM
 
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that hymn in church, and we are a predominantly white church. It is a beautiful hymn, but I assume that when it is sung in a public school setting, the last verse is not sung. I think it was announced in church that it is sung quite often by African Americans, but was not referred to as the Black National Anthem. I don't see anything wrong with it, as long as students are also taught the American National Anthem.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:27 PM
 
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I think it goes something like "Let us rejoice and sing........." Don't remember the rest. I sub at an all black private school and they sing it. I think it's a cool song. It's a great way to start off the day.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:01 AM
 
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I do agree.
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Not National Anthem
Old 03-15-2012, 11:51 AM
 
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There is only one national anthem. Please do not teach otherwise. A favorite song, an inspiring song, a religious song, a school song....but not national anthem.
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Old 03-15-2012, 05:08 PM
 
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Another reason why we remain "divided" on many levels.. It's not our National anthem. It's a song.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:03 PM
 
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Well, the song was originally created as a poem and then performed as a song during a time of segregation...a time when blacks were not treated as "regular" citizens. Should they have still sung the National Anthem to demonstrate pride in the country that wasn't treating them fairly? I wouldn't have. Instead, they sang this song as a sign of hope for true liberty. Historically, this song was an anthem for them and it should not be forgotten.
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A song of hope and liberty...
Old 03-15-2012, 08:58 PM
 
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... there's nothing wrong with that. No one is saying it should be forgotten. It's a lovely song, but it's not America's national anthem and it shouldn't be called that. We don't have separate nations within our country. Things like this are divisive. United we stand, divided we fall.
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Much bigger things to worry about
Old 03-16-2012, 11:39 AM
 
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This song is FAR from what is actually dividing our country.
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wow
Old 03-16-2012, 01:03 PM
 
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I don't usually reply to things like this...but I am shocked at the tone of some of these messages. I can only assume that none of the posters who are so dead set against Lift Every Voice and Sing are black or have someone close to them who is.
PLEASE do not put yourself on a high horse and think you can speak to someone's experience when you obviously do not have a clue!
Anonymity, you said it best
Quote:
Well, the song was originally created as a poem and then performed as a song during a time of segregation...a time when blacks were not treated as "regular" citizens. Should they have still sung the National Anthem to demonstrate pride in the country that wasn't treating them fairly? I wouldn't have. Instead, they sang this song as a sign of hope for true liberty. Historically, this song was an anthem for them and it should not be forgotten.
It is NOT being put out as the American National Anthem. I think a few people need to take a step back- do a little research if you are so unclear- and have a little bit of compassion for the brutal history that black people have had to fight (and still do!) to overcome.
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Old 03-16-2012, 03:01 PM
 
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No one said they didn't have compassion for the brutality of what black Americans went through in this country. So, therefore, there is no need to "step back."

What we said, we said clearly, I thought. There should not be a divisive song in our country that is labeled as The Black National Anthem, in this day and age. When we will be ever get to move past it? I did not participate in any slavery acts or anything of that kind, yet, because I'm white people assume I don't have a clear understanding of the ignorance of the white people before me. Trust me, I do. However, I think that if we continue to separate ourselves and pretend we don't understand each other, then we never will. It's sad actually.

Last edited by PeaceRunner; 03-16-2012 at 03:05 PM.. Reason: added something
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oh brother!
Old 03-19-2012, 11:50 AM
 
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Exactly why I don't usually respond to these things. You obviously didn't read my response carefully. The "step back" was to understand the history of the song... not the "ignorance of white people" YOUR WORDS...certainly not mine! Every culture deserves the right to preserve its' history. Black people have a shared experience that you only understand if you come from it or have roots in it. I honestly don't expect you to understand- just don't throw stones.
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Old 03-19-2012, 04:59 PM
 
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I understand the history of the song ~ still, no need to step back. Yes, we all deserve the right to preserve history but we also must learn from history and not continue to make the same divisive mistakes. Which, to me, is what things like this song do for our country.

How am I throwing stones? I simply shared my opinion on how I feel that we should not have a separate National Anthem. It further divides us. Should we call the real National Anthem, The White National Anthem? No, of course not... sounds absurd, huh? We are, and should be, ONE nation.

How do you know what roots I have or that I can't possibly understand? Please don't assume things about my family that I have not shared.

I stand behind what I said about things that further attempt to divide us as a nation. I don't want to argue with you illinoisteach... Things like this just frustrate me as I'm sure they do for you as well, but for opposite reasons.
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I think that there
Old 03-19-2012, 05:29 PM
 
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is some confusion here over vocabulary---that pesky word national. I started a unit today using the book Me on the Map. I did not refer to the United States as our nation but as our country.

According to dictionary.com:
na·tion   [ney-shuhn]
noun
1.a large body of people, associated with a particular territory, that is sufficiently conscious of its unity to seek or to possess a government peculiarly its own: The president spoke to the nation about the new tax.
2.the territory or country itself: the nations of Central America.
3.a member tribe of an American Indian confederation.
4.an aggregation of persons of the same ethnic family, often speaking the same language or cognate languages.

According to Wikipedia:
A nation may refer to a community of people who share a common language, culture, ethnicity, descent, and/or history.[1] In this definition, a nation has no physical borders. However, it can also refer to people who share a common territory and government (for example the inhabitants of a sovereign state) irrespective of their ethnic make-up.[2][3] In international relations, nation can refer to a country or sovereign state.[1] The word nation can more specifically refer to people of North American Indians, such as the Cherokee Nation that prefer this term over the contested term tribe.[1]

Looking at these definitions it is easy to see that African Americans may consider themselves a unique nation within the "American nation." Especially in 1919 when the NAACP first called this song the Negro National Anthem. Before Congress proclaimed the Star Spangled Banner the U.S. National Anthem in 1931.

Did you know that there is a Native American National Anthem? Did you know that many current Native American/American Indian groups refer to themselves as Nations instead of tribes? While some groups use the terms interchangeably?

Did you know that the Kurds are considered a nation--although they reside in four different countries?

FYI, this website has an interesting discussion about the difference between a country, a state, a nation, and a nation-state.
http://www.infoplease.com/world/stat...ry-nation.html
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Old 04-01-2012, 01:27 PM
 
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I work at a fairly affluent private Christian school and we sing this song frequently during our chapel services. Then, we talk about Black History. It is a beautiful hymn.
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Negro National Anthem
Old 04-01-2012, 02:10 PM
 
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I learned the song when I was in high school. We sang it for a Black History program. Until today, I have never heard of it being referred to as anything but the "Negro National Anthem". Obviously, from the title, you can tell that the song is old. I don't know many people that still use the word Negro. I can see one poster's point about not being divided, however, as an African American, I do not see me singing this song once a year as dividing my country. As a matter of fact, there were many white people there singing along... so no division was seen.
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Old 04-01-2012, 02:29 PM
 
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Quote:
I think that if we continue to separate ourselves and pretend we don't understand each other, then we never will.
I agree. I don't think you can have it both ways.
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Old 04-01-2012, 03:20 PM
 
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I've silently refused to teach that song as the BNA. There is no such thing.
BTW that song takes a mature trained voice to sing effectively.

Last edited by kitekrazy; 04-01-2012 at 05:38 PM..
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Old 08-19-2012, 06:28 PM
 
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It's the anthem for a people, not a country. That is a huge problem with this country, history and the educational system- Refusing to teach factual things because one doesn't agree with it or want to acknowledge an occurrence. I grew up singing this song at every assembly or special event and was never confused about it being America's anthem. It isn't trying to be. It's about an oppressed group of people trying to come together as one "voice" to have faith, hope and not forget the past, but to have pride and move forward at the same time until equality is reached. The negative thoughts i'm reading here, is why this song is taught to young black children and remains a cultural staple. Every culture has their own songs, dances, traditions etc. please do not belittle it's significance because you do not understand it's deep meaning. It is okay to not know or understand, but it can have a huge impact on that small group of black children that may be in your school.
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