The past few years have seen many anniversaries related to African American history and the Civil Rights Movement – 2013, the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream Speech,” stamped the Civil Rights Movement firmly in the minds of Americans and the worldwide community; 2014, the anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was the most sweeping civil rights legislation since Reconstruction; and, this year is the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which provided additional safeguards for African Americans to exercise their right to the ballot box.
For those of you who saw Downton Abbey last season, you saw Rose bringing a jazz band (with lead singer Jack Ross) to Downton, shocking many not only because of Jack’s race, but also the music itself.
By Robert Lisiecki
As February comes to an end and March nears, the Academy Awards loom on the horizon. It is appropriate, then, that we discuss Twelve Years a Slave. Not only is this movie nominated for numerous Oscars—including “Best Picture”—but the story is an important piece of our overall history.
Confession: I haven’t seen the movie. I’m not much of a moviegoer, but I do intend to see it soon since I heard it was well done. I did read the book, and if the movie is anywhere near as gut-wrenching and eye-opening, then I have no doubt it should take home many awards.