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Good BBC documentary on civil rights in the USA

Mike McCartney

6th June 2021

The Black American Fight for Freedom

The film is on iPlayer:

This the BBC blurb:

"In America, if you're black, you're five times more likely to go to prison than if you’re white. And the typical white family has eight times the wealth of the typical black family.

Fifty years on from the promise of equality and the Civil Rights Act, this documentary reveals the moments where America had the chance to become more equal and why that didn’t happen.

Through compelling interviews with those who were at the forefront of the struggle for a fair system in education, housing and criminal justice, the film reveals the key court cases, Supreme Court rulings and laws that failed to bridge the gap.

It gives us the shocking context to the anger felt by the millions of people who took to the streets during the Black Lives Matter protests. The movement was not just calling for an end to police brutality but also asking for something that had been pledged 50 years ago: racial equality."

Personally, I didn't find the programme was particularly revelatory, so if you have studied the topic in some detail the most one can expect is a bit of a refresher.

But for students who have not encountered similar material, it is well worth a watch because the production values are pretty high.

Mike McCartney

Mike is an experienced A-Level Politics teacher, author and examiner.

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