Welcome to English Black Friday. This website has been created in order for you to learn more about African-American/Black culture, music, history, language, customs, food and all that jazz. You are very
welcome and so are your comments. Help us spread this beautiful culture that we are surrounded by.
I’m Rodrigo Pelegrini Honorato, an English teacher from Brazil. I was born on March 4, 1986 in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais. It is a fairly big city! There are thousands of English schools in BH, but I have never seen any where variants of Englishes have been taught. I started learning English on March 10, 2003 and as you might expect, only Mainstream English was taught. However, I have always loved Rap and Hip-Hop. Back then, you would find me listening to 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Tupac, Eminem, and some other artists, but there was a problem: I could not understand any of them whatsoever.
In 2005, I started tutoring to pay for my English course. I would help starters after class and school would pay for my studies. In 2006, I started studying Linguistics and Literature (Letras) at the Catholic University of Minas Gerais (PUC-MG) where I got my degree in 2011. My academic life was interrupted twice – 2007 and 2008 – because I would go to the United States and that was my dream that was about to come true, so I did not really care about missing a term or so. That was a fork in the road and I, I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference. While in the U.S, I lived in Houston,TX in a predominately-black area called Alief. I worked at the Alief Family YMCA during summer 2007. I learned a lot throughout that summer and it led me to studying even more about African-American history, culture, music…
I had a chance to visit Harlem – uptown Mahattan – 3 times and experience many interesting things: people talking on the street, shopping at street-stands, going to Apollo Theater on 125th street, watching Harlem Choir… It was an enriching experience! So, from then on, I have been dedicating to learning more and more about African-Americans and this website is where I can share with you all I have learned and experienced.
Now, I teach English at CACS in UFMG and at Achieve Languages Pampulha. These are the only schools that opened doors for me to create workshops, lectures, and conversations about Black English. I am very thankful and happy for the opportunity they have given to me. Because of them, many people know about my work and passion: African American Vernacular English. Also, I would like to highlight a person who has been of utmost importance in my academic and personal like. She has been a great inspiration for me as a teacher and blogger. Thank you Vânia Castro for the helping hand and support. You guys should come check he blog for those who like to travel and visit new places. It is Viajar e se Apaixonar. I am sure you will learn a lot and discover incredible places.
English Black Friday stands for:
“English” because this is the official language of the website,
“Black” because it is all about black people
“Friday” because every Friday, you will have something new to experience on our website.
Make yourselves at home,
Rodrigo P. Honorato