THE CONTRADICTIONS OF FAIR HOPE & MARRIAGE EQUALITY
MARRIAGE EQUALITY: BYRON RUSHING AND THE FIGHT FOR FAIRNESS by Thomas Allen Harris (USA, 2011) 15 minutes. English. Genre: documentary.
This documentary interweaves archival footage and photos with contemporary interviews to illuminate events surrounding the pivotal Massachusetts state constitutional convention on same sex marriage. At the center of our story is Massachusetts Representative Byron Rushing, a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement who took the campaign for same sex marriage into African American communities. He directly challenged many religious leaders, and advocated for same sex marriage as a Civil Rights issue on par with the liberation movements of the 1950s and 1960s. Rushing, a heterosexual man of strong faith, has spent a lifetime championing the causes of the underserved, overlooked and oppressed.
Part of a longer film program including "The Contradictions of Fair Hope".
CONTRADICTIONS OF FAIR HOPE
S. Epatha Merkerson and Rockell Metcalf (USA, 2012) 67 minutes. English. Genre: documentary.
There is a heaven side and a hell side: which side will you be on? July 1865. Over 4 million slaves have been freed. Forced to roam the antebellum countryside, many of them are ill prepared and unable to cope with the realities of their newfound freedom. This documentary examines a little known aspect of American history, when newly freed slaves throughout the South formed "benevolent societies" to respond to the abject hunger, illness and the fear of a pauper's grave.
The documentary, narrated by Whoopi Goldberg, sets the stage in rural Alabama, prior to Emancipation, and traces the development, struggles, contributions and gradual loss of tradition of one of the last remaining African American benevolent societies, known as "The Fair Hope Benevolent Society" in Uniontown, Alabama.
Through gripping human stories of some of the last surviving society members and interviews with historians and local residents, the film provides an unprecedented look at the complex and morally ambiguous world of Fair Hope juxtaposed against the worldly pleasures of what has become known as the annual "Foot Wash" celebration.
Langston Hughes Perfoming Arts Center (View)
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