Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Martin Luther King

Today is Martin Luther King's birthday (although we don't officially commemorate the event until next Monday - when the library will be closed in observance of the holiday), and he was assassinated 40 years ago this April. Between the anniversary of King's death, and the presidential campaign of Barack Obama, there is a lot of attention being paid right now to history and impact of the civil rights movement. We have a few video series that you might find interesting.
Eyes on the Prize: America's civil rights years 1954 to 1965 was an award-winning documentary series that appeared on PBS. It chronicles the beginnings of the modern struggle for civil rights and the various events that alerted the nation to the racial inequalities present in the society.
A few years later PBS followed up with Eyes on the Prize II: America at the racial crossroads 1965-1985. Learn more about the legacy of Dr. King's leadership, and the work that was still left to be done in the years following his assassination.
For a more general view of the issue of race and its effect on society, you might try the 3-part series Race: the power of an illusion. This series examines the way that cultural beliefs and historical events have influenced our perception of race and ethnic divisions. This series focuses not just on African Americans, but on all racial groups and instances of 'us' and 'them'.
Communicating Across Cultures is a 4-part series that looks at the way different racial and cultural groups relate to each other. Produced by Juneau's KTOO television station, and narrated by the brilliant Father Michael Oleksa, this series focuses particularly on ethnic groups in Alaska. This would be a great video to watch next month, also, in commemoration of Elizabeth Peratrovich Day.

No comments: