Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America – a ground-breaking, two-hour documentary film by acclaimed historian Dr. Gretchen Sorin and Emmy-winning director Ric Burns – aired on PBS on Tuesday, October 13th, 2020. The film examines the history of African Americans on the road from the early 1900’s through the 1960’s and beyond. The film explores deeply embedded dynamics of race, space and mobility in America – focusing in particular on the experience of African Americans navigating the nation’s highways during the last four decades of Jim Crow – one of the most crucial, turbulent and transformative periods in American history. With urgent and powerful reverberations in American society today, this riveting history – at once revelatory, deeply troubling, and inspiring for what it reveals about human courage, creativity, and commitment to change – provides a crucial window on issues of class, automobile culture, discrimination and national identity.
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