Almost a decade ago, this series appeared on PBS and since it was Public Television, hardly anyone watched it. Soon afterwords, it came out on videotape and once again hardly anyone watched it. It is no longer in print and the only way I was able to get a copy was off eBay.
So why did I search so long to get a copy? Well, the series was THAT good and it makes a wonderful film for students in American History classes--which is where I sometimes use it. Additionally, it explores, in depth, the roots of Black-America in Africa in ways that TV rarely does--looking at the greatness as well as the low-points of the cultures. This ranges from wonderful histories of the powerful kingdoms of Ethiopia and Timbuktu as well as the Black involvement with the slave trade--the high points and the low. The honesty and insights are quite refreshing and paint a rich tapestry. Dr. Gates has managed to teach us great stuff AND be interesting and engaging in the process (imagine that). And, thankfully the series is not marred by political correctness or any agenda--it's just good and enjoyable.
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