The Inheritance shows what life was really like for immigrants and working Americans from the turn of the century through the fight for civil rights in the 1960s. This stirring history of ...
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The Inheritance shows what life was really like for immigrants and working Americans from the turn of the century through the fight for civil rights in the 1960s. This stirring history of our country shows their struggle to put down roots, form labor unions, survive wars, and finally, create a new and better life for themselves and our nation. Our film explores a landscape largely unknown to the present generation - the dim sweatshops, coal mines and textile mills filled with children; the anxious years of the depression and labor's bloody struggle for the right to organize; the battlefields of WW I and II; the seldom seen newsreel footage of the Memorial Day massacre at The Republic Steel strike in Chicago; the civil rights struggle - as every generation fights again to preserve and extend its freedoms. This is the film's theme. Judy Collins sings this theme song, as well as more great music sung by Judy, Pete Seeger, Tom Paxton and others. We retain the copyright to the film, but ... Written by
This documentary was made for the Amalgamated Clothing Workers (ACWA) as part of their 50th anniversary celebration. The union was formed in the early 1900s by immigrant workers--Jewish, Italian, Eastern European, etc. The movie documents their early efforts to win a union, the events of the Depression and the New Deal, World War II. It ends with the 1963 civil rights march on Washington, linking the struggles of the union with those of the civil rights movement. Millard Lampell made the move (he had been blacklisted.) Y.A. "Yip" Harburg (over the rainbow) wrote some original music. The copies out there are mostly circulating in beat-up copies of copies of VCR tapes. Excellent documentary, using a lot of Brechtian montage. Someone really needs to restore this movie. I show it to my graduate students. Dr. James H. Williams
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