Posts Tagged ‘Ava DuVernay’

James Bonard Fowler and Jimmie Lee Jackson: On a 60-year-old shooting death in Alabama

February 24, 2015

By Matthew E. Milliken
Feb. 24, 2015

Earlier this month, I wrote in praise of Selma, director Ava DuVernay’s retelling of the civil rights struggle in that Alabama town.

During the movie, a young man named Jimmie Lee Jackson is senselessly shot and killed by a state trooper after a night protest. As noted in my review, this was based on an actual event, which was described at length in this 2005 feature article in The Anniston Star.

I linked to the story, which was written by John Fleming, in my first post about Selma. Still, I wanted to call attention to the piece on its own, because it tells an extraordinary tale.

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Marching toward equality: Ava DuVernay’s powerful ‘Selma’ retells a key episode in the American civil rights movement

February 7, 2015

By Matthew E. Milliken
Feb. 7, 2015

Selma, the 2014 film directed by Ava DuVernay and written by Paul Webb, is a moving chronicle of the civil rights struggle in Selma, Ala., in 1965.

The film’s protagonist is the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the iconic American and civil rights leader, and the movie’s focus is on his effort to stage a march from Selma to Montgomery. At the time, King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) were attempting to register blacks to vote, a right theoretically granted them by the Constitution but thwarted in reality by bigoted state and local officials.

The conference chose Selma as the backdrop to their 1965 protests because the Dallas County sheriff, Jim Clark, was a deep-seated bigot and notorious hothead in a state led by Gov. George Wallace, a fervent segregationist. King and other movement leaders believed that law enforcement officials, especially Clark, could be goaded into acts of brutality that would shock the consciences of people around the nation and the world.

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