Historical & Current Events dictionary

Black Futures Month

[ blak fyoo-cherz muhnth ]

What is Black Futures Month?

Black Futures Month is a monthlong observance devoted to celebrating, envisioning, and working toward positive futures for Black people.

Most of those who observe Black Futures Month treat it as a forward-looking complement to Black History Month, which is much more widely observed.

Others promote Black Futures Month as a rebranding or replacement of Black History Month (in some cases due to a belief that Black History Month is too focused on negative events of the past). Critics of treating the month in this way often state that doing so can have the effect of ignoring or erasing both negative and positive events in Black history.

Observance of Black Futures Month involves events that focus on positive contributions and influence of Black people in the present world and on efforts and visions for a more just and equitable society for Black people.

Black Futures Month especially emphasizes artistic expressions and is often associated with Afrofuturism.

🗓 When is Black Futures Month?

Black Futures Month is observed during February, the month traditionally observed as Black History Month.

Related words

Black joy, Black History Month, Black excellence

Where does Black Futures Month come from?

Side view of two young African American people on black background

The earliest records of the term Black Futures Month come from the early 2010s. Around 2015, Black Futures Month began to be promoted by organizations like the Movement 4 Black Lives, which has referred to the month as “a visionary, forward-looking spin on celebrations of Blackness in February.” Observance of the month during February is rooted in the fact that February is Black History Month.

The use of the plural Futures in the name of Black Futures Month is often interpreted as indicating the diversity of the Black experience and the many different opportunities and possibilities for Black people—as opposed to a single, monolithic vision for the future.

Examples of Black Futures Month

Let us remember this is not only Black History Month; it’s also Black Futures Month. We are observing & celebrating our past, present, & future. Let us be grounded in the fact, not an opinion or a possibility, that our magic will always bring us forward into the future. #BHM
@venusselenite, February 2, 2022
While we continue to gratefully recognize and learn from their contributions, increasingly, February has also become about looking forward. Alongside Black History Month, more and more people and organizations are spending these 28 days celebrating Black Futures Month.
Michèle Pearson Clarke, The Toronto Star, February 21, 2021

Who uses Black Futures Month?

Black Futures Month is typically observed as a forward-looking complement to Black History Month, which is much more widely observed.

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This is not meant to be a formal definition of Black Futures Month like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of Black Futures Month that will help our users expand their word mastery.