Lebrecht Music & Arts / Alamy Stock Photo
Black history lives at diplomatic conferences, in comedy clubs, on street corners, and behind tennis courts, but
filmmakers and researchers are taking us beyond the usual stops to learn about its power this Black History Month.
Creative and biological descendants of the life’s blood of Black history are using their voices to introduce us to the motives and fears of those deciated to making change using exclusive clips and
interviews. They are following subjects as they accomplish their greatest achievements and work through some of their toughest times. See the humanity in your favorite R&B voices, learn the origin story of controversial comedians, join athletes as they chase greatness, and listen to an opera singer prove her talent to be undeniable.
Documentaries are ushering audiences into opera halls, country clubs,
church pews, the front row of fashion shows, inside real estate deals and international embassies, and between the pages of mole skin notebooks to see accomplishments taking place in multiple industries, regions, and genres. They are also exploring the challenges faced by Black storytellers, actors contemporary artists, and politicians.
See 40 specials we are watching and learning from this Black History month below.
Walk Against Fear: James Meredith
This special follows the life of one of our country’s most committed voting rights activists.
The Obama Years: The Power of Words
This special features a string of six powerful speeches from our former commander-in-chief.
Seizing Justice: The Greensboro 4
Learn about four men who risked their lives and liberties to take a stand by taking a seat.
The Black Church: This is Our Story, This is Our Song
This four part special explores the roots of the Black church and how it grew to be the foundation of Black society.
Fannie Lou Hamer’s America: An America Reframed Special
“Speeches,” “songs,” and interview segments tell the story of Fannie Lou Hammer.
Ali The Man
Jesse Washington narrates this Ken Burns project featuring interviews with Rasheda Ali Walsh, Howard Bryant and more.
The Undefeated/ PBS
In Their Own Words “Chuck Berry”
Learn about the Rock ‘N Roll legend.
Owned: A Tale of Two Americas
The impact of home ownership on a family’s finances can potentially differ based on what they look like. This special explores the promise of the “American Dream.”
AMERICAN MASTERS “Marian Anderson: The Whole World in Her Hands”
See how an angelic voice shattered glass ceilings.
The American Diplomat
Edward Dudley, Terence Todman and Carl Rowan were three ambassadors who served a country that refused to honor their full citizenship. See how they put their patriotism above all else.
AMERICAN MASTERS “Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool”
Take a look at the life of the legendary musician.
Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America
This special highlights the ins and outs of driving while Black.
© 2022 WCNY
4 Little Girls
This documentary shows how small four children being cut down by hatred resulted in national outrage.
Women of Troy
See how Cheryl Miller helped cause a major shift in women’s basketball during her time at the helm of the USC Trojans.
Whoopi Goldberg Presents Moms Mabley
Whoopi Goldberg helped honor the historic comedian through this documentary.
This multi-part special follows Serena Williams as she conquers her next great challenge – motherhood.
Black Art- In The Absence of Light
The history and current state of Black art in America is explored.
Paul Robeson- Tribute to an Artist
This documentary offers a tribute to Robeson’s work and activism.
Visit one of Black America’s most important landmarks.
The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks
Oprah Winfrey starred and produced in this adaptation of the story of a family fighting to correct an unimaginable injustice.
We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest
Follow a group of children honoring King’s legacy of shifting the world through words.
We Will Rise – Michelle Obama’s Mission to Educate Girls Around the World
Follow our forever First Lady on her mission to promote the education of girls around the girl.
Between The World And Me
Watch some of the most powerful actors of our time engage with Coates’ game changing letter.
Bitchin’: The Sound And Fury Of Rick James
Learn about the free spirit and fierce talent behind your favorite dance songs and comedy sketches.
Photo credit: Mark Weiss
The One And Only Dick Gregory
Kevin Hart and Lena Waithe produced this look at Gregory’s life on and off the stage featuring interviews with Chris Rock, Wanda Sykes, and Dave Chapelle.
Teddy Pendergrass: If You Don’t Know Me
Soak up the history behind the number one slot on your mom’s cleaning playlist.
You’re Watching Video Music Box
Nas celebrates a pivotal tool in placing hip-hop at the top of our nature’s cultural landscape.
Of Mics And Men
Waiting for season two of American Saga? Take a trip to Shaolin with the Wu.
Barbara Lee- Speaking Truth to Power
See what lead Lee to dedicate herself to public service and hear about her impact from her fellow politicians, actors, and authors.
The Gospel According To Andre
See a legend use his encylopedic knowledge of fashion to foist himself to the top of the industry’s couture clad inner-circle.
Homecoming: A Film By Beyoncé
After trading traditional schooling for the stage Beyoncé spent a lifetime longing to attend an HBCU leading her to create this incredible visual love letter.
Out Of Omaha
J. Cole produced this coming-of-age story about a pair of twins fighting to flourish despite the systemic injustice of the cornhusker state.
Screen Queens Rising
This ABC News special features Halle Berry, Tessa Thompson and more sharing their experiences about being Black women in Hollywood.
Photo Credit: ABC/Matt Petit
‘Soul of a Nation Presents: X / o n e r a t e d – The Murder of Malcolm X and 55 Years to Justice’
Muhammad Abdul Aziz, the man falsely accused of murdering of Malcolm X speaks out about his experiences.
Photo Credit: (ABC/Michael Le Brecht)
Use of Force- The Policing of Black America
Chuck D narrates this special on policing.
Photo Credit: Peacock
Black Moderates and Black Militants
Three members of the Black Panther Party argue the rationale for an African-American high school.
Photo Credit: HBO Max
The icon looks back at her life and career.
Photograph by Courtesy of HBO
Beah – A Black Woman Speaks
Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis and more luminaries celebrate the accomplishments of actress and activist Beah Richards.
Photo Credit: HBO Max
The Loving Story
Learn about the relationship that inspired the romance tradition of “Loving Day.”
Photo Credit: HBO
Olympic Pride, American Prejudice
Learn about all of the Black athletes who represented a nation that considered them second-class citizens at the 1936 Olympics.
Photo Credit: COFFEE BLUFF PICTURES / KweliTV