Mapping Blackness is a digital archive that celebrates the heroes, communal spaces, and heart of historically Black communities.
MAPPING BLACKNESS is a digital archive that celebrates the people, places, and passions of small-town, Black America through the eyes of young people. The project has a dual goal: 1) Teach students to document the everyday heroes of old, Black neighborhoods. 2) Create a history by and for Black communities that are frequently overlooked in mainstream and official American histories, such as those created by White-run newspapers and school textbooks. By focusing on intergenerational storytelling, filmmaker Carla LynDale Bishop hopes to inspire a new generation of activist storytellers. The project is a mobile-first experience that presents student-created content and community-generated content using a variety of storytelling technologies, including geotagging, 360 VR, and 3D renderings. Plus old-school documentary footage, photographs, and media clippings. Earlier iterations of MAPPING BLACKNESS also included augmented reality history tours and exhibitions. Teaching users and educators to create their own content and add it to the map is a key component of the project. It is intended to be a living history of communities that are rapidly disappearing.