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Six Films for Black History Month

Embark on a cinematic journey this Black History Month with this curated list of six compelling films, available through the library, that illuminate and celebrate the richness of African American history and culture. These films and hundreds of others are available to students, staff, and faculty through the SWANK Digital Campus subscription.

Compiled by Mary Ann James.

By Ava DuVernay

A chronicle of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s campaign to secure equal voting rights via an epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in 1965.

By Kasi Lemmons

Based on the thrilling and inspirational life of an iconic American freedom fighter, Harriet tells the extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman’s escape from slavery and transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes. Her courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.

By Brian Helgeland

In 1946, Jackie Robinson is a Black League baseball player who never takes racism lying down. Branch Rickey is a Major League team executive with a bold idea. To that end, Rickey recruits Robinson to break the unspoken color line as the first modern African American Major League player.

By Edward Zwick

Shaw was an officer in the Federal Army during the American Civil War who volunteered to lead the first company of black soldiers. Shaw was forced to deal with the prejudices of both the enemy (who had orders to kill commanding officers of blacks), and of his own fellow officers.

Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am
By Graham Willoughby and Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

This artful and intimate meditation on the legendary storyteller examines her life, her works and the powerful themes she has confronted throughout her literary career.

Just Mercy
By Destin Daniel Cretton

A powerful and thought-provoking true-story, “Just Mercy” follows young lawyer Bryan Stevenson and his history-making battle for justice.

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