Your response should include a summary, of NO MORE than one page, and a critique or review in the form of an analysis of the film’s historic accuracy as well as “what it teaches” about African Americans generally and, where applicable, in the Harlem Renaissance in particular. Think in terms of what someone without your knowledge base and expertise would “learn” about Black Americans in this period and the history of the Harlem renaissance or race relations in the United States in general from seeing this film. Given your analysis then, what role might mass media, in the form of this commercial film, play in what we understand about our collective past? Do you think this film offers more positives than negatives in its presentation of African Americans? And, finally and in particular, how does your reading this eight weeks inform your viewing and analysis of this film? (You do not have to answer these questions sequentially, but you should address each one in some way.) This essay should make a contention or argument, and should use solid evidence academically cited to make its case.
A side note: There are *so many* powerful and worthwhile films out there. In compiling this list I have focused on films dating from 1920-1950; films which are about the time period or the participants of the Harlem Renaissance; films based on stories written during the Harlem Renaissance, or films about themes touching this course (the Great Migrations, etc). For that reason I have not added “Selma” “Malcolm X,” “Fruitvale Station,” or “Hidden Figures,” because the focus is on the late 50s going forward; “Black Panther” (rooted in superheroes); “The Wiz”. “the Color Purple,” “Beloved,” “13th”, “Do The Right Thing,” “When the Levees Broke,” “Black Girl,” “Crooklyn,” “Paris is Burning,” “Eve’s Bayou,” “The Rape of Recy Taylor,” “What’s Love Got to Do With it?” “Glory,” “12 Years A Slave,” “Straight Outta Compton,” “Belle,” and many others –they are documenting events or are set before or after the Renaissance. That said, not only is this not an exhaustive list, but some of the films on the list are pushing at those boundaries, so if you know a film — fiction or documentary — that you want to analyze, ask me and make a good case for it. (For example, if you can FIND “The Gilded Six Bits,” a short film based on a short story by Zora Neale Hurston, or the film she herself shot, “Commandment Keeper Church”, have at it!)

Been Rich All My Life: Classy Hoofers of Harlem’s Golden Age (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)
Mary McCleod Bethune (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)
Mr. Civil Right (Links to an external site.)s (Kanopy)
Hughes’ Dream Harlem (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)
Josephine Baker: Black Diva in a White man’s World (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)
Black is the Color (Links to an external site.) (Films on Demand)
Noble Sissle’s Syncopated Ragtime (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)
The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross (Kanopy) (Links to an external site.)
(Links to an external site.)Zora Neale Hurston Fieldwork Footage (Links to an external site.) (Criterion)
Zora Neale Hurston, Jump at the Sun (Links to an external site.) (Kanopy)

FILMS (links take you to International Movie DataBase, which has links to film’s streaming location. Most of these films are on pay channels, but the occasional one is on You Tube).
20th Century:
Moon Over Harlem (1939) (Links to an external site.) (Free, tubitv)
Within Our Gates (1920)Links to an external site. (Free, You Tube)
Imitation of Life (1934) (Links to an external site.): Prime video (rental)
Imitation of Life (1959 (Links to an external site.)): Prime video (rental)
Show Boat (1936 (Links to an external site.)): Amazon
Pinky (1949): (Links to an external site.) Amazon Prime (rental)
The Cotton Club (1984) (Links to an external site.): Amazon
Carmen Jones (Links to an external site.) (1954): Amazon Prime (rental?)
Lost Boundaries (1949): (Links to an external site.) Amazon (rental)
Murder! (1930) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon Prime Video, Included free)
The Emperor Jones (1933) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon Prime video, included free)
A Raisin in the Sun (1961) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon Prime or FREE on You Tube)

Black Orpheus (Links to an external site.) (Free, Kanopy)

21st Century:

Their Eyes Were Watching God (2005) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon)

Brother to Brother (2004) (Links to an external site.) (Urban Movie Channel with Prime)

I am Not Your Negro (2016) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon Prime, free)

42 (2013) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon Prime)

Self Made: Madame C. J. Walker (2020) (Links to an external site.) (Netflix, short series)

If Beale Street Could Talk (2018) (Links to an external site.) (Amazon, rental?)