Author Ernest J. Gaines Dead at Age 86
A dedicated storyteller who centered Black lives in the deep South, the award-winning author of “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” gave voice to the frequently silenced.
The World Remembers John Witherspoon, Dead at 77
Honor the comedy icon’s legacy with a laugh today via these clips of him at work.
Jessye Norman Dies at Age 74
The renowned soprano’s career ran across five decades.
The World Mourns Renowned Architect I.M. Pei
Pei designed iconic works—including the Louvre and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame—that are nothing short of amazing.
Celebrate the Life of Hawaiian Guitar Virtuoso Cyril Pahinui Via His Music
The slack key guitar star died at the age of 68.
Black Women Honor Ntozake Shange's Feminist Legacy
The author of the genre-smashing “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow Is Enuf” died at age 70.
Aretha Franklin's Family Denounces Reverend's 'Distasteful' Eulogy
Vaughn Franklin says Reverend Jasper Williams Jr.’s remarks at his aunt’s funeral ignored the late singer’s life and condemned activists and single Black mothers.
LIVESTREAM: Aretha Franklin's Funeral in Detroit
Join the world in mourning and celebrating the Queen of Soul as famous fans like Stevie Wonder and Jennifer Hudson arrive in the Motor City for her funeral.
How Aretha Franklin Lent Her Voice to the Civil Rights Movement
The Queen of Soul, who just passed away at age 76, captivated the world with her vocals and turned a plea for “Respect” into a rallying cry for justice. Revisit her legacy.
Janet Jackson Pays Tribute to Late Father at Essence Festival
Joe Jackson died just two weeks before the performance.
Reflections on Anthony Bourdain, Celebrated Chef and TV Host Who Opposed Racism and Xenophobia
People of color remember the award-winning chef, tv host and author who advocated for immigrants, supported the #MeToo movement, and fiercely opposed racism and colonialism.
Anti-Apartheid Activist Winnie Madikizela-Mandela Dies at Age 81
A leader in the fight against South African apartheid, she died surrounded by family members in Johannesburg.
Hip Hop Salutes Craig Mack
The “Flava In Ya Ear” rapper is dead from heart failure at age 47.
Civil Rights Strategist and Activist Wyatt Tee Walker Dies
Walker worked with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and led the Southern Christian Leadership Conference during the 1960s.
The Words and Wisdom of Trailblazers Who Passed Away In 2017
We’re honoring some of the activists, performers and pioneers of color who died in 2017 in their own words.
Native Activist and AIM Leader Dennis Banks Dies at Age 80
The American Indian Movement co-founder resisted the U.S. government’s oppression of Native people for decades.
Rock and Roll Pioneer Fats Domino Dies at Age 89
The New Orleans singer-songwriter and pianist paved the way for rock music with songs like “The Fat Man” and “Ain’t That a Shame.”
Black Hollywood Honors Actor Robert Guillaume
Guillaume, whose work on “Benson” made him the first Black man to earn a lead comedy actor Emmy, died at age 89 after battling prostate cancer.
MAC Honors Aaliyah With Fan-Driven Cosmetics Collection
The R&B singer died in a plane crash 16 years ago.
'Whitney. Can I Be Me' Explores the Artist's Struggles With White Entertainment Industry Standards
The new feature documentary, which chronicles Houston’s life from pre-superstardom to her sudden 2012 death, airs exclusively on Showtime.