The Case for Black With a Capital B

Now Playing: Basic Black: Hollywood and the Slave Narrative

Basic Black: Hollywood and the Slave Narrative

Original broadcast November 1, 2013

When the awards were given out at the 86th annual Academy Awards, it was the historical drama 12 Years a Slave that would make its own history that night.  John Ridley would become the second African American to win an Oscar in the writing category.  Lupita Nyong’o would win for Best Supporting Actress in her first feature role, becoming the 7th black actress to win an Oscar. And when 12 Years A Slave won Best Picture of the Year, it would be the first time a film with a black director took the Academy’s top honor. Tonight we hope you enjoy an encore presentation of our conversation taking you inside the historical backdrop for Solomon Northrup’s journey and 12 Years A Slave.

- Callie Crossley, TV and radio host, WGBH
- Phillip Martin, senior reporter, WGBH News
- Kim McLarin, cultural critic and assistant professor of Writing, Emerson College
- Peniel Joseph, professor of History, Tufts University
- Gayle Pemberton, professor emerita of English and African American Studies, Wesleyan University

(Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures)