4 Questions With a Black Santa

4 Questions With a Black Santa

Santa Dee and his helpers try in vain to get Morgan Cowart to smile for the camera.

TR: You incorporate the story of St. Nicholas as a Turkish monk of African descent into your work as Santa Claus. When did you first learn about him?

SD: During a fall festival, a woman walked by with her son and pointed to me, asking him if he wanted to take a photo with Santa Claus, and the young man said, “No, Santa Claus ain’t black.”

It made me very upset, to the point that I did a lot of research and even have a gentleman who sends me various images that show St. Nicholas as a darker-skinned man. In one photo he even looks like Frederick Douglass, with the hair and all. That’s what it looked like to me.

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4 Questions With a Black Santa
Aisha I. Jefferson
Sun, 25 Dec 2011 17:18:00 GMT