Kwanzaa is celebrated by people of African descent on December 26th and continues until January 1. This seven-day period is a call to unite people around the world. During this time, people gather with their families and remember their ancestors, honoring them with candlelight and prayer.
Kwanzaa was founded in 1966 by the American writer and professor of African studies, Maulana Karenga. It was created during a difficult period when African Americans were fighting for equality. The name Kwanzaa comes from the Swahili language, a language spoken in East Africa. The number seven is significant because it corresponds to the seven principles of the holiday: self-determination, unity, creativity, responsibility, teamwork, development of society, and honoring of traditions and ancestors.
- 15% of the US population celebrates Kwanzaa.
- It is a model of American creativity.
- It is translated as “first fruits.”
- Its principles have been modified over time and now can be celebrated by people of all backgrounds.
How to take part
During Kwanzaa, houses are decorated with fruit baskets, flags, and themed figurines. People often gather for prayer and then return home to continue the celebration. Hostesses prepare delicious dishes and gifts for guests, and local festivals are held to provide an opportunity to learn more about the culture. Tourists are welcome to take part in these festivities!
When is Kwanzaa celebrated in 2023?
Kwanzaa is observed on December 26 each year.