The retreating sun lit up in the unique kaleidoscope of pinks and oranges you only see on the Prairies. It took a final bow, disappearing over the seemingly endless Prairie horizon of Duck Lake, Sask. July’s warmth enveloped the place.
As I watched, I thought of how Black people have seen the same sun waltz on these same lands for more than 200 years. They have become an undeniable thread in the Canadian fabric.
CBC’s Black on the Prairies places Blackness in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba at the centre of the country’s story.
The project’s first iteration, published in April 2021, explored the past, present and future of Black life here, but there is still so much more.
We now present Black on the Prairies: Place Edition.
The Black experience on the Prairies is a vast landscape. It’s the ongoing dialogue between Black and Indigenous communities. It’s how Black people express joy and create. It’s the parallels between the lives of early Black settlers and Black people on the Prairies today.
Engaging with that landscape can mean excavating Black Prairie history from the shadows into classrooms, imagining Black life in the public sphere beyond violence, or just finding a piece of home on the Prairies.
These new stories situate Blackness on the Prairies, challenging its erasure from the public discourse and lifting up ongoing efforts to assert Black lives.
This project continues to benefit from contributions by a 10-person community advisory board. To them, we are immensely grateful.
Here you will find personal essays, articles, audio stories, images and more. Welcome.
Black on the Prairies co-creator
Black on the Prairies: Place
Associate Producer, Audio Lead
Social Media Presenter
Designed by Andrew McManus
Developed by Dwight Friesen
With support from CBC Calgary, CBC Edmonton, CBC Saskatoon, CBC Saskatchewan and CBC Manitoba