UC Berkeley Library

African American Studies

A Time for Burning

Originally produced in 1967, this classic cinema verite fim captures the awakening of the civil rights movement as it challenged the nation to change its ways. Originally rejected by three major networks for being too converversial, the film captures the struggles of the pastor of an all-white Lutheran church in Omaha, Nebraska as tries to get his congregation to reach out to their fellow black Lutherans, only to find a wall of resistance among his church. Conceived, directed and edited by Bill Jersey & Barbara Connell. Originally released as a documentary film in 1967. 58 min.

A Time for Justice: America's Civil Rights Movement

Uses first-hand testimony of participants and archival footage to present a compelling look at the battle for civil rights in the South, recalling the crises in Montgomery, Little Rock, Birmingham, and Selma. It depicts the struggle through the experiences of its "foot soldiers," who rode where they weren't supposed to ride, walked where they were forbidden to walk and sat where they weren't supposed to sit and stood their ground until they won their freedom. Dist.: Direct Cinema. 1992. 38 min.

A Village Called Versailles (Lang Versailles (Vec Sai))

A documentary about Versailles, a community in eastern New Orleans first settled by Vietnamese refugees. After Hurricane Katrina, Versailles residents impressively rise to the challenges by returning and rebuilding before most neighborhoods in New Orleans, only to have their homes threatened by a new government-imposed toxic landfill just two miles away. Director, S. Leo Chiang. 2009. 67 min. Awards American Library Association Video Round Table: Notable Videos for Adults
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A. Philip Randolph: For Jobs & Freedom.

Biography of the African American labor leader, journalist, and civil rights activist, A. Philip Randolph. Randolph won the first national labor agreement for a black union, The Sleeping Car porters. His threat of a protest march on Washington forced President Roosevelt to ban segregation in the federal government and defense industries at the onset of WWII and again he forced Truman to integrate the military.

A. Philip Randolph: For Jobs & Freedom.

Biography of the African American labor leader, journalist, and civil rights activist, A. Philip Randolph. Randolph won the first national labor agreement for a black union, The Sleeping Car porters. His threat of a protest march on Washington forced President Roosevelt to ban segregation in the federal government and defense industries at the onset of WWII and again he forced Truman to integrate the military.

Achievements in American Black History: Black Religion.

Traces the history of Black religion from its African origins. Discussion of the roots of Black religion in tribal life and beliefs, its adoption of the White church framework, and its spiritual, social, and political influence in America. 40 min.

Achievements in American Black History: Early Black Cinema.

Examines the beginnings of the American Black cinema which flourished between 1916 and the early 30's. 40 min.

Affirmative Action Under Fire: When is it Reverse Discrimination?

The account of a reverse discrimination court case over the firing in 1989 of a white teacher in a Piscataway, New Jersey high school because of her race. Shows how this court case became a national battle for affirmative action and how affirmative action preference advocates paid the white teacher $450,000 to drop her case in order to avoid a Supreme Court decision that would potentially invalidate all affirmative action programs in the United States.

Affirmative Action: The History of an Idea.

Explores the historical roots of affimative action and the current debate over its usefulness. Looks at several different affirmative action programs including the Univ. of California, Berkeley, the U.S. Army, federal aid to minority businesses, and affirmative action in the Chicago Police Dept. Includes archival footage and features interviews with a wide array of academic scholars. Dist.: Films Media Group. 1996. 56 min.

Africa to America to Paris: The Migration of Black Writers.

Traces the path of African-American literature from the shores of the U.S. to the Left Bank of Paris at the end of World War II through the late 1960s. The program provides context by first exploring the New Orleans salon poetry of Desdunes and then discussing the historic suppression of black activists in the U.S. after the Harlem Renaissance. This program primarily traces the lives of James Baldwin, Richard Wright and Chester Himes who immigrated to Paris seeking greater intellectual freedom. Includes remembrances of fellow artists and readings from their diaries and works. 1997.

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