Tag: Slavery

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Entertainment

‘12 Years’ a hit with Black filmmakers

Chiwetel Ejiofor by Stacy M. BrownFor New Pittsburgh Courier(NNPA)—Famed film director John Singleton said when movies about African-Americans debut, he’s always the first to be called to lend insight.Singleton, who directed the 1991 critically-acclaimed drama “Boyz in the Hood,” said that recently his telephone hasn’t stopped ringing “I’d like to talk about other movies, too,” he said, but acknowledged that he doesn’t mind weighing in on the recent avalanche of Black films, including what many view as an Oscar front-runner, “12 Years a Slave.” “I’ve seen it and I can tell you it’s a work of art,” said Singleton, 45.

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Entertainment

12 Years a Slave: The realest slavery account in a movie ever

This image released by Fox Searchlight shows Michael Fassbender, left, Lupita Nyong’o and Chiwetel Ejiofor, right, in a scene from “12 Years A Slave.” (AP Photo/Fox Searchlight, Francois Duhamel) I’ll never know what it means to be a slave, producing forced, free labor, in the United States prior to the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. More definitively, I could not imagine what it would mean to be a legally free person and still be held captive for little over a decade.

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Entertainment

Gates charts 5 centuries of African American history in new PBS documentary

This Aug. 7, 2013 photo provided by Rahoul Ghose/PBS shows Henry Louis Gates Jr. during PBS’ “The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross with Henry Louis Gates Jr.” session at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Courtesy of Rahoul Ghose/PBS) by Frazier MooreAP Television Writer NEW YORK (AP) – Slavery in the United States was once a roaring success whose wounds still afflict the country today. So says Henry Louis Gates, Jr., who examines both its success and shame in “The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross,” his new PBS documentary series that traces 500 years of black history. “Slavery is a perfect example of why we need limits on the more unfortunate aspects of human nature,” he says. “Slavery was capitalism gone berserk.”

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Opinion

Why you should see ’12 Years a Slave’

British director Steve McQueen, Kenyan actress Lupita Nyong’o and British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor attend the pre-reception of the Accenture Gala Screening of “12 Years A Slave” at the Langham Hotel, during the 57th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express® on Friday Oct. 18, 2013, in London. (Photo by Jon Furniss/Invision for BFI/AP Images) by Lewis Beale (CNN) — Slavery is the most abhorrent chapter in America’s history. Everyone knows it happened, but few people know much about it or want to think about it. Which means that it’s not exactly something that pops up with regularity in popular entertainment–even though slavery’s legacy, 150 years after the Emancipation Proclamation, is still very much with us.

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Entertainment

A pronounced rise for Ejiiofor in ’12 Years’

This Sept. 14, 2013 photo shows British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor from the film “12 Years A Slave,” in New York. Ejiofor portrays Solomon Northup, a free black man who was abducted and sold into slavery in this pre-Civil War drama. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Invision/AP) by Jake CoyleAP Entertainment Writer TORONTO (AP) — Chiwetel Ejiofor arrived, he thought, prepared for the first day of shooting “12 Years a Slave.” To play Solomon Northup, a free man from upstate New York who was kidnapped and sold into slavery and who later chronicled his experience in a book, Ejiofor had studied Northup’s memoir, visited plantations and learned how to, as Northup did, play the violin. But all that work could scarcely ready him for the intense reality of performing a slave’s labor in a Louisiana summer.

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Opinion

The Heart of the Black Conservative (Yes, we have one)

Within the Republican Party, there is what I call this mystery of the Black conservative. Let me explain. Over the years, I have had this conversation with people from the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Ollie North, Mike Huckabee and Haley Barbour, etc. They would argue that there was this growing trend of “conservatism” within the Black community. I told them all categorically that this was bull.

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Opinion

International adoption: I was stolen from my family

by Tarikuwa Lemma Special to CNN (CNN) — When I was 13, I was sold. Friends of my father worked for a corrupt adoption agency operating in my homeland of Ethiopia — friends my father trusted. In 2006 they coerced him into believing he was sending my younger sisters and me to America for an educational program during which we would come home every summer and on school breaks.

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Entertainment

Pitt attends premiere for ’12 Years a Slave’

Lupita Nyong’o arrives at the premiere for “12 Years a Slave” on day 2 of the Toronto International Film Festival at The Princess of Wales Theatre on Friday, Sept. 6, 2013, in Toronto. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) by Rob MerrillAssociated Press Writer TORONTO (AP) — The upcoming film “12 Years a Slave” is a harrowing look at slavery, but its stars, including Brad Pitt, say it’s a subject that needs to be explored more on the big screen.

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National

Md. dig seeks proof of 1st free Black community

Tracy Jenkins, a graduate student in anthropology at the University of Maryland, displays artifacts found during excavation efforts in Easton, Md., as classmate Sabrina Shirazi, right, sifts through soil in hopes of finding evidence that might prove the state was home to the first free African-American community in the nation. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) EASTON, Md. (AP) — Archaeology students have been sifting through a little patch of ground on Maryland’s Eastern Shore this summer, seeking evidence that it was home to the nation’s first free African-American community. Historians say hundreds of free Blacks once lived in the area, while plantations flourished with hundreds of Black slaves not far away. The students from the University of Maryland, College Park, and Morgan State University, an HBCU, have been digging behind what is now the Women’s Club of Talbot County. The building, part of which dates to at least 1793, was home to three free non-White residents, according to the 1800 Census.