I have always been into African American history as long as I can remember.
My grandmother and Great Aunt who was a school teacher, was really big into educating the youth in the family and making sure we knew our history.
I remember sitting down and watching documentaries on PBS with my Dad as a child and teen. They weren’t as interesting to me then as they are now, but I definitely found it interesting. My mom exposed me to different African American films she had watched coming up like “Watermelon Man”, “Carmen Jones” and “Raisin In The Sun”.
Growing up in the suburbs or Kansas City, Missouri in a predominately white school district African American history, was skimmed over.
Sure we did book reports on black historical figures (I distinctly remember having to do one on Zora Neale Hurston, how ironic is that, since she’s one of my favorite writers now) and usually doing it in the month of February was a usual occurrence, and then left alone the rest of the school year.
Since my maiden name is King, I was often asked if Dr. King was a relative of mine. To which as a child I contemplated momentarily and then replied “I don’t think so?!”
I went home and asked and my parents had a good, good laugh about the question their 2nd grade daughter posed.
In general I knew everything on the surface about this man, everyone put on a pedestal as a great civil rights leader, in fact THE civil rights leader of the 60’s.
In 2006 however, I had a chance to visit The King Center in Atlanta, GA and was blown away!
It gave so much more depth and perspective for me, a young lady who had only really learned on the surface about the civil rights movement and listened to the stories of my mom and dad who lived through the time in history.
Last week on April 4th was the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination.
I just watched this HBO documentary last night and WOW!
It was so emotional. So heavy!
I literally couldn’t go to sleep for awhile I was so wound up.
The documentary gave such a unique prospective of what he was like, what his likes and dislikes were. It was so personal. There was a lot of interviews from his friends and unseen footage.
It really made me feel, empathize and learn what stress, what sadness, what anger, what strength it took to do this work and all the other different emotions that this great man would have been going through.
He was a man, with feelings and aspirations, a wife, kids, a mom, a dad, siblings just like anybody else. He smoked cigarettes, wasn’t perfect, liked to laugh and liked to joke around with friends.
This documentary definitely was one I had been looking forward to seeing for awhile. Like I said last week in another documentary review, I love love looking in to other peoples lives. It gives me motivation and a different perspective.
Also, in this day in time it’s just nice to be reminded of such a powerful person that many of course know about but to hear it told in a different way is so valuable!
So in short this was EXCELLENT!
If you haven’t seen this documentary, definitely find a way to watch it!
Until next time…