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Groundwork for royal wedding laid generations ago

Meghan Markle is the daughter of an African American social worker and a white Hollywood TV cinematographer. As the House of Windsor welcomes Meghan Markle, a half-black American, into its fold with what will likely be a fairy tale-worthy wedding to Prince Harry, we should realize that as momentous as this mixed-race marriage is in our 21st century landscape, the groundwork for such unions was laid once upon a time. As a professor of Renaissance literature at Bowie State University, Maryland’s oldest historically black university, I make it a point to incorporate the historical presence of black individuals into my course. And it’s a lot easier than you may think. A careful study of British and European history demonstrates that the narratives and images of an all-white Europe disseminated through mainstream media are inaccurate. Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancée US actress Meghan Markle pose for a photograph in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace in west London on November 27, 2017, following the announcement of their engagement. Indeed, black lives matter in English and history classrooms. Archaeology has proven as much. An African auxiliary unit of the Roman Army was stationed at Hadrian’s Wall a century after Christ’s birth. The African-born Roman Emperor Septimius Severus extended the empire’s borders in 208 A.D. when he refortified the Antonine Wall in Scotland.

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