The Charles Joyner Institute for Gullah and African Diaspora Studies examines the historical migration and scattering of African populations to local geographical areas and the subsequent evolution of blended cultures, specifically Gullah. CCU’s location at the northern tip of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor puts it in a unique position for diaspora study and research. The work of the institute provides students with experiential learning opportunities, both at home and abroad, that center on interconnections among local, national, and global peoples and their societies. The Institute is also a catalyst for community involvement.
South Carolina ETV (SCETV) will be premiering a new hour-long documentary film on October 1 entitled “Gullah Roots.” Follow members of the South Carolina, Florida and Georgia Gullah Geechee community as they experience a homecoming in Sierra Leone. You can also join community members to celebrate the debut of this project at a film screening event on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 7 p.m. at the Highway 21 Drive-In, located at 55 Parker Drive in Beaufort, S.C. The event is open to the public. Additional information and a registration link can be found on Eventbrite.
The trip to Sierra Leone took place last winter and included Gullah Geechee scholars, performers and cultural ambassadors, such as Anita Singleton Prather, also known as Aunt Pearlie Sue of the Gullah Kinfolk, and Ron and Natalie Daise, as well as Victoria Smalls, a commissioner of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor. While touring the country, members of the group noted powerful connections between Sierra Leone and the Gullah Geechee people.
In addition to its premiere on Oct. 1, Gullah Roots will also be airing on Sunday, Oct. 4 at 2 p.m. on ETV World and Monday, Oct. 5 at 8 p.m. on the South Carolina Channel.