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Tag: Liz Fichera

The Seven Princples of Kwanzaa in Teen Fiction

Kinara and Seven Kwanzaa Candles.

Kwanzaa is a holiday that lasts from December 26th through January 1st. The celebration originated in the 1960s and honors the impact of an African heritage on Americans.  While Kwanzaa is enjoyed by mainly people of African descent, the values shared at this celebration can be appreciated by everyone.  Originally defined in the Swahili language, Kwanzaa illustrated seven principles intended to guide and strengthen our community. (Kwanzaa)

  1. Umoja – Unity
  2. Kujichagulia – Self-Determination
  3. Ujima – Collective Work and Responsibility
  4. Ujamaa -Cooperative Economics
  5. Nia – Purpose
  6. Kuumba – Creativity
  7. Imani – Faith

Each principle is represented by a black, red or green candle; the colors of the Pan-African flag.  One candle is lit every night in a special order and each candle represents one of the seven principles.  To incorporate these ideals into your Kwanzaa celebration, here is a list of YA books that embody the seven principles.