By Nina K. Guzman
To commemorate the social justice activists, civil rights icons, and fearless leaders who fought (and those who continue to fight) for equality in all aspects of our daily lives; we’ve gathered a list of documentaries that tell these stories in surprising and enlightening ways.
This poignant documentary takes a look at race relations right here in Athens, GA. When an elite white fraternity (known for waving the Confederate flag and holding an annual antebellum parade) moves into a historical African American neighborhood, two communities struggle to keep their respective legacies relevant in an ever changing American South.
Watch the trailer: http://petuniaproductions.net/old-south/
This biographical documentary follows the life of social justice icon, John Lewis, from his involvement in the civil rights movement of the 1960s to current day activism. It’s a fascinating look at a man who has been unflinching in his perseverance to fight for the marginalized and ignored.
Watch online at PBS.org: http://www.pbs.org/program/john-lewis-get-in-the-way/
The New Communities Inc (NCI) was founded in 1969 in Lee County, GA as a farm collective to help secure economic independence for African American families. At nearly 6,000 aces, not only was it the largest tract of land owned by African Americans at the time, it became one of the original models for community land trusts in the United States. Learn the story of how NCI began from humble beginnings to its almost complete eradication to the flourishing community it is today.
Watch the trailer: https://vimeo.com/140458846
The Civil Rights movement of the 1960s encompassed a wide range of social injustices, but one of the major ones was voting rights. This film focuses specifically on Mississippi when legions of activists flooded the state in 1964 to not only help the rural communities of African Americans get out to vote but to also bring attention to the rest of the nation on the brutal conditions they were suffering through on a daily basis.
Watch the trailer: https://vimeo.com/83539844
There’s a pervasive myth that slavery ended with the passing of the Emancipation Proclamation. This film tears that lie to shreds by illuminating how new forms of forced labor emerged following the Civil War and whose dregs still insidiously affect the criminal system today.
Watch online at PBS.org: http://www.pbs.org/tpt/slavery-by-another-name/watch/
You can find these titles and other DVDs from the collection at our media display on the main floor of the library.