Based on a true story, this trailer of director Ryan Coogler’s debut feature film Fruitvale Station (2013) characterizes and showcases the experiences of protagonist Oscar Grant, a young African American man living in a working class area of Oakland, CA. The quick snippets of the trailer paint Oscar in a sympathetic manner: he is a devoted father, boyfriend, and son who is struggling to find work to keep himself off the streets. However, a scuffle on the subway ensues when a former prison inmate of Oscar’s recognizes him. The violence quickly escalates as police officers throw Oscar onto the platform at Fruitvale Station. Although the trailer does not reveal what happens to Oscar, the 2008 incident and subsequent peaceful and violent protests point to another instance of an unarmed black man’s death by police shooting.
This compilation of clips from UPN/The CW's Girlfriends (2000-2008) was uploaded to Youtube in 2011. Created by an African American woman, Mara Brock Akil, the show was a highly successful sitcom that was particularly popular during its run with African American young adult women. In this clip, the characters are depicted reacting to any number of situations with the refrain: “Oh, hell no!”
Directed by Victor Fleming, produced by Selznick International Pictures, and based on a 1936 novel by Margarett Mitchel, 1939's Gone with the Wind is generally recognized as one of the greatest films of all time. Set in the 1800s in the American South, it tells the story of the Civil War and Reconstruction period from a white southern perspective. In this scene, the protagonist, Scarlett (Vivien Leigh), is getting dressed for a barbeque with the help of her house slave and maid, Mammy (Hattie McDaniel). Mammy is depicted as servile but stern, strict but loving. McDaniel went onto win the Academy Award for her role, the first African American to do so. She was forced to sit at a racially segregated table during the ceremony.
Good Hair is a documentary film created and produced by Chris Rock and released in 2009. It explores the culture and aesthetics of hair in the African American female community. It also delves into the big business of the hair industry, as well as the global trade of hair to feed the African American market.
This is an ad for G-Unit clothing company, which was founded by 50 Cent – a successful rapper – in 2003. In this image, several African American males stand around a car at night in an inner city location. It appears that the car is being loaded with large speakers. The central male stands on the car’s hood and looks down at the viewer. The slogan on this poster is “Be the Neighborhood Idol.”