Special Collections

Africans in America

Broadcast in October 1998, this six-hour, four part series explored the central paradox that is at the heart of the American story: a democracy that declared all men equal but enslaved and oppressed one people to provide independence and prosperity to another. The series opens in the 16th century on Africa's Gold Coast with the European and African trade, and ends on the eve of the American Civil War in 1861. Africans in America examined the economic and intellectual foundations of slavery in America and the global economy that prospered from it. The series revealed how the presence of African people and their struggle for freedom transformed America.

Fifty-three original, full-length interviews comprising more than 55 hours shot for Africans in America are available in this collection.