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Unchained Memories: Readings from the Slave Narratives (2003)

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Title: Unchained Memories: Readings from the Slave Narratives (2003)

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Nominated for 4 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »


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About a 1839 mutiny aboard a slave ship that is traveling towards the northeastern coast of America. Much of the story involves a court-room drama about the free man who led the revolt.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Djimon Hounsou, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Hopkins


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Sandra Daley ...


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In their words, our shared history.







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January 2003 (USA)  »

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All Americans should see this.
28 March 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I went to the trouble of registering at this site just so I could disagree with the previous reviewer. I think this is a fantastic document. If it causes people to look with sorrow and anger at the immoral behavior of slaveholders, well - it should.

I also disagree vehemently with people who say: "this should be seen especially by African-Americans." I think it should be seen especially by white Americans because the slave experience, now that all the eye-witnesses are long dead, is in danger of being forgotten. I am a Jew and feel fearful about the death of the last Holocaust survivors. Already there are people saying it never happened. So, too, with the horrors of slavery. But within this DVD are the voices, real and vital, of the witnesses. The WPA book series (which is available free to read on the Library of Congress site) is a priceless part of our history. Yes, I shudder with grief and rage at the behavior of the whites who participated in, condoned, or simply tolerated the treatment of blacks under slavery.

The readings are beautifully done. The actors are great and very involved in the project. The editing is exceptionally good. The music, primarily by the McIntosh County Shouters, is also great. The period photography is used to perfect effect - we can look right into those eyes and imagine what they saw. Editing is unobtrusive, that is to say that we hear the voices of the slaves undimmed by egotists on the modern end.

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