WNET

Wilmington: A Peaceful City Turned Violent

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This video from The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow examines the factors that lead to violent and irreparable change in Wilmington, North Carolina. In the years following the Civil War, Wilmington, with a prosperous and growing African-American middle class, was a city that exemplified peaceful co-existence between the races. But in the 1898 election, when the white-dominated Democratic party regained power throughout the state, blacks in Wilmington not only lost their civil rights, but also were victims of a terrible massacre staged by angry white mobs.

Moses Mendelssohn, a Jewish Link to Germany

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In this video from The Story of the Jews, Simon Schama takes us to Berlin, Germany, where the young Talmudic scholar Moses Mendelssohn arrived in 1743 at the tender age of 14. At the time, Berlin was still quite antisemitic, but Mendelssohn forged an unlikely friendship with several early Enlightenment philosophers. He quickly learned English, German, Greek, and Latin, and became well-respected for his philosophical writings in German. One of his best-known accomplishments is the translation of sections of the Torah from Hebrew into German – the first time this had been accomplished by a Jew.

The Crisis: A Weapon Against Jim Crow

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This video describes W.E.B. Du Bois' role as editor of the NAACP journal The Crisis. Under Du Bois' leadership The Crisis began a crusade against atrocities perpetrated upon African Americans. With impassioned articles, readership grew to over 100,000 subscribers. After securing President Wilson’s support for desegregation in federal hiring, Du Bois was disappointed when Wilson instead gave his consent to Southern cabinet members to segregate their departments.

The Testimony

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In this video from Women War & Peace, female witnesses bravely share the horrors they experienced during the war. According to the women, they were imprisoned in buildings in their town and raped repeatedly by Serb soldiers, and they share chilling tales of the violence they experienced. One of the defendants also takes the stand and claims the whole situation was a misunderstanding. However, through a series of careful questions, prosecutor Hildegard Uertz-Retzlaff is able to unravel his claims.

Plessy vs. Ferguson

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A mere thirty-five years after slavery ended, a sophisticated and strategic group of African Americans challenged the Jim Crow Separate Car Act in the state of Louisiana by placing a fair-skinned Creole black man named Homer Plessy on the “whites only” railcar. This video presents how the landmark Supreme Court case Plessy v. Ferguson helped legalize segregation and sent a message that the federal government favored states' rights in all matters of fairness and equality.

Roe v. Wade

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This video segment from The Supreme Court provides background on the landmark case Roe v. Wade. In the early 1970s, at a time when many Americans believed a woman’s place was in the home, the women’s movement was sweeping the nation. Women wanted the right to make choices not only about careers but also about when and even if they would have children. For the women’s movement, abortion rights meant that women did have choice. The video goes on to explore how conservative Justice Harry Blackmon came to write the liberal opinion that legalized abortion.

Sally Field: We Came Over on the Mayflower

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In this video from Finding Your Roots, Henry Louis Gates Jr. introduces Sally Field to her Pilgrim ancestor, William Bradford. Bradford sailed to America on the Mayflower and later became the governor of the Plymouth colony where he presided over what many consider to be the first Thanksgiving.

The World's First Ghetto

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In this video from The Story of the Jews, Simon Schama discusses the consequences of the Spanish Expulsion, including Jewish immigration to the Ottoman Empire and the Republic of Venice. Both the video and background essay describe the origins of the word "ghetto," the name of the walled district established in 1516 to house the Jewish population of Venice.

Let's Talk Bias

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Bias can take many forms, and impacts various groups in different ways. In this Youth Collective video produced by Reel Works, five young people share stories of experiencing bias targeted at their unique identities. Support materials include discussion questions, vocabulary, and a template for students to share their own stories using the free DIYdoc filmmaking app.

Resenting Prosperity and Equality | The African Americans

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This video from The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross describes how white people’s resentment of African Americans’ prosperity and their alleged achievement of equality bred violence.

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