man000927. Roosevelt Fitzgerald Professional Papers, 1890-1996. MS-01082. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada. http://n2t.net/ark:/62930/d1862fr5t
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THE MOVIES AND THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT: SOME POSSIBLE INFLUENCES
BY ROOSEVELT FITZGERALD
Two weeks before its opening at the Ritz Theater of Natchez, Mississippi in 1957, a preview of the movie "Island In The Sun" was shown at that theater. Natchez, whose motto was and is: "Where The Old South Still Lives", was not receptive of that particular coming attraction. Local white citizens groups who feared that its subject of suggested miscegenation would give local black men "ideas", opposed its showing.
As the theater's custodian and relief-projectionist at that time, I was privy to some of the in-house conversations in which reactions to threats of violence against that establishment were made. The owners of the theater were Jewish and that only fanned the flames of bigotry.
On opening day, beginning during the early morning hours, a contingent of upwards of one-hundred robed Klansmen picketed the theater. White Natchez- ians boycotted the theater that day and blacks were intimidated to such a degree by the hooded "champions of freedom", that, on that day, they avoided the downtown area of Natchez completely. There was one showing of the film but with no audience save that of the owners and the employees. I had a bird's eye view because, that day, owing to the white projectionist's refusal to cross the Klan's picket line, I threaded it up, lit the carbons and flicked the switch.
The Ritz was an old theater. It had balconies, il.oges, red satin curtins which covered the screen, thick carpeting with scrolls, marble floors in the bathrooms and lobby, leather seats with no gum stuck underneath—I saw to that, beveled and brass mirrors and the best pop corn in town. Inside, we were sheltered from the disturbance which raged outside. However, from time to time someone would strike the rear doors, which opened to the al leyway with some sort of heavy metal object. Two hours later, the movie ended and I shut off the projector. The Ritz closed after that first showing of "Island In
The SunJ and never reopened.
Dating back to the days of slavery, many white Americans--especially southerners "have publicly- voiced sentiments in opposition to miscegenation. Mongrelization of the races became the ultimate taboo in spite of liberties taken by'white men with black womenl Such manifestations as represented in the film^lsland In The Sun'Jand a few others were rarely produced and when they were they generally did not find audiences w the south. The south, however’ did not ^itiate the practice of censorship which dates back to the 920s^.
Over the years, the movies have probably been the most attractive, popular—and worried about-*-of all media or communication^ Their extraordinary power to capture reality and give it representation in the most simply understood tenns has not only guaranteed them a large■
■ following, but convinced many persons that they have a special capacity for harm. In a mass society this E power and popularity’has aroused a strong censorship interest that has shadowed the movies since ^heir beginning and taken a toll of free expression. [Randall 1970:3).jg
Most will agree that the sublets of sex and violence in movies have generated the greatest amount of attention from the ^censors! Mae West^smsB of the 1930s? sucTasI "Is that a gon in your pocket, or^are you just glad to see mel (Anger *197 5:185) helped fuel the enthusiasm o^such organization J as^the Legion of Decency^ Randall further concludes that I "As a result J an entire generation of Americans grew up with the 'famiS film—an artistically immature, moral 1?safeland highly profitable entertainment." (Randall :I185)1 That period is often referred to as Hollywood^ "Golden Age".
That trend, which had It* beginning during the height of America's depression of the 1930s^continued/uninterrupted, on^nto the 1950s when the circumstances of Hollywood films was altered by the widespread introduction of television and the Supreme Court'sleinterpretation of "freedom of speech".
Bfhose two events affected both audiences and movie
Most films made beginning with the final half of the 1930s through the 1950s were fairly sanitized. During those years, there was not an awful lot fori the censors to do. In more ways than not, there was little "wrong" with the movies forlthat quarter Jcentury. examining what was left after purification!there is much to be said about those "family" films of the "golden age".
Tony uhomas, who was Frst introduced to America by the movies he saw as a child growing up in England, offers’an excellent^ objective description of"the manner in which?the medium of the movies not only entertained but
The American image propagated by the movies in Hollywood's Golden Age was always more rural than urbanW The moHe moquls took their cue from Abraham Lincoln and celebrated Kthe qualities of the common people ratherkthan the leaders of society and the captains of industry! They also saw the value in playing up the virtues outlined in the Bill of Rights, especially those pertaining to ^individual ism and
Bthe riqht of the individual to make his own way in 1 iTe, W and thoselvirtues tended to look better when set in America s hamlets and byways and wide open spaces rather than its ■titles...Fortunately,* in that Golden Age, it was good business to play up what was good about America gather than what was bad Land the good American image of personal freedom and fair treatment looked particularly good set in a f small town and personified by a genial fellow like will Rogers. (Thomas 1981: J 9-20)■
Hollywood closing its eyes to the shortcoming^ of America did not make
them go away. It is my contention that the absence of those presences served to dramatize Amerila's^ailure to bring democracy^to all her citizens.
This paper w?U show how certain movies of thajperiod influenced the nurturing and value development’of those segments of American society to whom Hollywoodjcharacterizations of democracy, liberty and justice was much more than play-acting. For those to whom the rights of Kizenship and humanity were yet an Illusion, what was depicted in the movies^quite possibly caused both conscious and unconscious consideration in the issues of oppression? despotism?terrorism and injustice! Hollywood'J
golden age was a time when movie goers developed fan clubs and had heroes. It was a time when movie going was a family affair and when television had not usurped childrens' playtime. It was a time when children, while at play, emulated their heroes and the heroes were always the good guys.
The conflict between good and evil was a constant formula for movie plots. At play, few children were desirous of imitating those characters, whom they had seen in the movies, who represented evil and when personnel limitations demanded that they do so, they did so half-heartedly. Their values had already determined for them that good always triumphs over evil and that representing good was not only heroic but it was also godlike. The association of diety to heroics would seem to be in direct proportion, representationly, to the role of a diety in the ordinary events of a viewers life.
The dialogue of those movies came into play during playtime and was repeated often enough that it became part of the speech and thinking of the players/children. It became part of their values. It became part of the way they saw themselves and how they saw their world. Hollywood, inadvertently, played a role in conditioning the children of those generations for what would happen in the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Black children, especially in the south, had few avenues of diversion. Most public recreational facilities were off limits to them. They could, however, go to the movies. Even though they sat in the balcony or in theaters where the races were separated by a dividing wall, they watched the same movies and had the same heroes as did white theater goers. They re-lived those movies while at play. They uttered the dialogue and in playing the part of the several heroes, their young lives took on new meaning and value. Without realizing it, their play was rehearsal for future reality.
The background which helped shape these events is significant. For a twelve year period following the close of the American Civil War, black people in the United States experienced some freedoms which they had not had before. Those Amendments to the Constitution which were passed and ratified during the period of Reconstruction ended slavery, extended citizenship to black people and gave them the opportunity to become voters. (Linton 1977:451). When Reconstruction ended in 1877, those newly gained rights began to erode. Due to devises such as terrorism, extralegal political activities such as concealing polling places, literacy tests, grandfather clauses and poll tax requirements (Franklin 1980: 258-263) and other tactics, blacks found themselves being relegated to the position of second-class citizenship.
While the Fourteenth Amendment did have a provision providing for equal protection [Linton 1977:451) it was enforced on neither the federal nor state levels. The deterioration of rights for black Americans ultimately gained federal sanctioning with the Plessy vs. Ferguson Supreme Court decision of 1896. (Woodward 1974:71).
For the generations of blacks who were born, nurtured and value oriented during the half-century plus between the end of Reconstruction and the mid-1930s, there was little occasion for them to contemplate such notions as liberty, equality and justice. Such opportunities were not present in their everyday affairs and those who were fortunate enough to attend the schools of that time, rather than learning of democracy, equality, liberty and justice they learned, instead, of jim crowism. Everything which they had access to was segregated and they did not have access to much of value. (Ellison 1972:13)
The series of race riots which ravaged the United States at the turn of the century necessitated the formation of the National Association for
the Advancement of Colored People in 1909. "A virtual reign of terror began in the 1890s and extended to the beginning of World War I." (Dye 1971:18). Within fifteen years of its founding, chapters had been organized in other cities in the north, northeast and west. In 1915, six years after the founding of the NAACP, the film "Birth of A Nation" premiered. It had dire consequences for Black Americans not only in the United States but in
other parts of the world where it was shown.
Negroes, are good masters. They are Thus the made the
the film implies, are inferior. The good Negroes because they are the faithful servants, of their
The others, who oppose slavery, are despicable, a threat to the white man and must be suppressed. Ku Klux Klan is justified—and glorified. It is salvation of the South. (Fulton 1960:85).
In virtually every city, town and hamlet where it was shown, race riots followed and for the next decade new chapters of the KKK marked the rebirth of a revitalized Klan. What had been represented as historical fact by the movie "Birth of A Nation", influenced, in one form or another, everyone
who viewed it. Some saw it only in terms of its technical attainments while other more enlightened patrons were only entertained by it. There were some who took it as a cue for action against blacks who were threatened
and later victimized because of it.
Those generations of black Americans born and nurtured between the close of Reconstruction and the depression had little or no access to the concept of democracy. It was fruitless to attempt to determine or even imagine what equality, liberty and freedom actually was simply by equating it with the known factors of what it was not. The answers to the questhons: "How should life be?" "How does it feel to be treated with respect?" "Hhat difference does equality truly make?" "What is the difference between what I am and what a citizen is?" and more could not be appreciably addressed in reality. Some notions to answers to those questions would begin to reveal themselves in the movies. Black people, who themselves lived in a society
wherein they were oppressed would discover that there had been others ,| historically'whoJad a"so been oppressed. The would learn how those otherV groups had articulated their perceptions of their circumstance and
if anything, they did about it.
For those to whom oppression was normal, discoveries made through the revelations the movies EldWmost UtanceVexperience minimal effect on their behavio? even thougflthei^attitudes might be greatly affected. For those who were somewhat younger, whose values were yet being implanted, who were yet having theirs personalities and^their sense of [Themselves definedMose same revelations of the movies would transcend fantasy and become possible realityJ
The initial ^*oup upon’which such films would have,the greatest chance to effect change were those born about the quarter-century mark of the Twentieth cent!N-those f"nal'?ear^o/ ankage of^innocence^ ky.the Md- wa'jpoin^ofjte depressionJthey would have'been of^an age whejchildren played-“no* u"fvely games buTextended play-acting in which they mimicked
< characters and plots^from the movieW
Due to theown "circumstance! black Americans,readily^identified with those characters or groupTwho were oppressed in the movies^Coinrig® entally, those oppressed were usualb/Bharacterized as decent, law abiding, godfearing peopled thereby were indeedlhe "good guys" and, blmovie's end, would have triumphed over
The 1936 film "Black Legion" did more than point out the evils of ■intolerance inherent in nativism. While Ihe film addressed the oppression oj recent^immigrant^ to the United States who did not readily American moldlwhat was’presented was more than sufficient for black people to identify^ mi lari ties between what wa I shown and what was the ir| private
Beatings, burnings and murder of foreigners and their symphatizers were shown in graphic detail. Such atrocities were common to Black Americans and in viewing such scenes, substituting themselves for the victims shown was quite easy. Most blacks had known or heard about other blacks to whom such treatment had been meted out at the hands of the Klan. Some had even been victims themselves. (Ingalls 1981:3-77; Suall 1983:71-81). Klans- men, as portrayed by the Black Legion, drew their membership from the ranks of men who appeared normal enough by day but who, after dark, donned their robes and became nightriding terrorists. In black conmunities throughout the country and especially in the south, such nightriders appeared at the doorsteps of any black person who seemed too ambitious, cognizant of his rights or who did not accept oppression with a smile. Such blacks were generally described as being "uppity". (Goldman 1952:1371.
The movie concludes with the arrest and conviction of the Legion s membership but not before the presiding judge makes a pre-sentencing statement in which he points out to the defendants the evils of their ways. The implications of the message was not lost on black audiences particularly those who incorporated the movie into their playtime. The complete text of the judge's statement is:
Furthermore, your idea of patriotism and Americanism is hideous to all decent citizens. It violates every pro- tection guaranteed them by the Bill of Rights contained in our Constitution. The Bill of Rights, assuring to us all freedom of religious opinion and security of person and property against the attack of illegal and extralegal forces, is the cornerstone of true Americanism and must be jealously guarded if we are to remain a free people. We cannot permit racial or religious hatreds to be stirred up so that innocent citizens become the victims of accusations brought in secrecy. We cannot permit unknown tribunels to pass judgements nor punishments to be inflicted by a band of hooded terrorists.
Unless all of these illegal and extralegal forces are ruthlessly wiped out, this nation may as well abandon its Constitution, forget its Bill of Rights, tear down its courts of justice and revert to the barbarism of government by primitive violence. This would mean relinquishing everything that civilized man has won by the most prodigious efforts over a course of the past five centuries. The American people made their choice long ago. Their blood and their sacrifices secured for us the basic human rights: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Their wisdom built the whole structure of our democratic form of government expressly to keep sacred and inviolate these same human rights. It is our duty to guard them zealously if we are to remain a nation of free men. As Abraham Lincoln said: "Our reliance is in the love of liberty which God has planted in us. Our defense is the spirit that prizes liberty as the heritage of all men in all lands everywhere. Destroy this opportunity and you would have planted the seeds of despotism at your own doors. (Myo 1936)
In 1936, to many blacks in movie audiences, this might well have been the first time they had heard of the Bill of Rights being associated with freedoms which were not to be denied by hooded nightriders. It might also have been the first time that they saw such characters being brought to justice. The fact that the film had no black characters is inconsequential. Further, it is not unusual for differing elements of an audience to come away from a film with different messages or to be affected in different ways. In the case of films having to do with the subjects of oppression or terrorism, all groups who themselves fit the category of oppressee tend to empathize with the oppressed person or group shown. Those who are not so victimized themselves, unless they are at least sensitive to the sufferings of others, might not have such a tendency.
The 1938 version of "The Adventures of Robin Hood", starring Errol Flynn in the lead role, has been popular for almost a half-century. It brought to the screen a hero with whom most could identify. He risked everything in his attempt to overcome oppression. He and other Saxons found that life under the rule of the evil Prince John was filled with
tyranny. Once again the oppressed group is quickly identified and once again they are good people while the oppressors are evil. The characters who represented the latter in this instance were not factory workers merely seeking to drive someone off the job or out of town or to commit murder. They did not represent the "common man" who might have been misled by fear and anxiety. In this instance, terror and injustice is in the person of noblemen who represented authority. Their station in life illustrated that authority does not obviate good-that it is possible for those in authority to themselves be oppressors.
The movie begins with Prince John and Sir Guy of Gisbourne plotting to over-tax the Saxons. Scenes inmediate thereafter shows the tax collectors at work—pillaging, enslaving free men and even denying Saxons the right to hunt in Sherwood Forest for food to eat. The overall view of the relationship between Normans and Saxons was that of oppressors and oppressees. Black audiences could identify their reality with the fantasy on the screen. Their experience had been that of local authorities aiding and abetting their oppressors. Often, as in Robin Hood, government officials were the oppressors and with them, as with the Saxons, the oppression was constant.
Blacks, like the Saxons, had all undergone one hardship or another individually. In viewing the film they were able to see how the latter group addressed their hardship. Robin provided the leadership which they had long needed. In the case of black oppression, dating back to the close of Reconstruction, black leaders had followed a policy of accomodation characterized best by Booker T. Washington. (Franklin 1967:84-90,17-18). There had been other leaders but, while they had national reputations, they did not exercise the national influence which Booker T. Washington wielded
for so many years.
Robin was a charismatic figure. Not only was he articulate but he had audacity and courage. He generated in the minds of the other Saxons that he indeed knew what he was doing. Additionally, even though he was Saxon he was also a nobleman and was in a position to lead a quite comfortable life even without going against Prince John. His involvement was not selfishly motivated. He sought primarily to help others. I am certain, however, that he realized that a wolf left unattended sooner or later becomes a menace to all. In assuming the position of leader of the men of Sherwood Forest, he was called upon to define all of the significant others. His first step was to arrange a meeting with Prince John in order to determine if any resolution to the conflict between Normans and Saxons could be found. He was willing to help create a circumstance in which John could alleviate some of the hardships being afflicted on the Saxons. It was possible, perhaps, up to that point, that what the Prince did was both unconscious and without malice. The audience knew better but there had not been any indication as to whether Robin had been privy to that information. The realities of the condition and its causes needed to first be defined.
Upon entering the great hall of Nottingham Castle on the occasion of a meeting of the Barons, Robin set about to determine the intent of the Prince in his relationship with the Saxons. After some banter where each seemed to be "feeling out" the other, Prince John revealed that he had removed King Richard's apponted Regency, Longchamps, and assumed the position himself. Robin considered such an act to be traitorious and so said. He informed the Prince that: "We Saxons are not going to put up with this oppression much longer." (Curtiz 1938). In wondering what Robin planned to do, he was told: "I'll organize a revolt. Exact a death for a death and I'll never rest until every Saxon in this shire can stand up free men
and strike a blow for Richard and England...From this night on I 11 use every means in my power to fight you." (Curtiz 1938). That eminent would be paraphrased and used during the course of the civil rights movement by blacks who, when asked how they proposed to get their freedom, responded by saying: "Through any means necessary."
An attempt was made to assassinate Robin there in the great hall but he managed to excape. After eluding his pursuers, he sent the miller, one of his followers, to go and "find Crip and the arrowmaker and his friends. Tell them to pass the word to every man who's been beaten or tortured Gallows Oak in Sherwood tomorrow. They'll understand"! (Curtiz 1938).
The attempt to negotiate a settlement of differences had failed® Robin called for a mass meeting—a meeting in which the grievances of the men of Sherwood could be consolidated. Such mass meetings would become a vital part of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. By word of mouth the announcement of the meeting was circulated and all those who indeed had been beaten or tortured or otherwise oppressed met at Gallows Oak] They all had shared experiences and Robin articulated their own frustrations and anger when he said:®
I've called you here as freeborn Englishmen, loyal to our kinq. While he reigned over us, we lived in peace. But since Prince John has seized the Regency, Guy of Gisbourne and the rest of his traitors have murdered and pillaged. You've all suffered from their cruelty—the ear loppings, the beatings, the blindings with hot irons, the burning of our farms and homes, the mistreatment of our women. It s time we put an end to this! Now, this forest is wl^e* It can shelter and clothe and feed a band of good, determined men__good swordsmen, good archers, good fighters, men, i you're willing to fight for our people, I want you. Are you with me?" (Haun 1986:249).
This pep talk! delivered by Robin to the men of Sherwood Forest, did much more than bring about a concensus of the extent of Norman oppression
and a galvanization of resolve onflthe part of the Saxons to overcome thei>« oppression! It also had an effect on audiences whereveathe movie was shown. Indeed, those portions of audiences who were themselves members of oppressed groups might well have seen themselves and their story being played out by the SaxonsV
After much conflictldeprivationSoss of property and losSof life, the Saxons proved victorious jil overthrowing their oppressors. The good king Richard returned and after ex-fling his brother, Prince John, unified, once again!Normans and Saxons’into one people and one country! As was .the case with mosWfilms of that period, there was a happy ending and good [triumphed over evil.
To childrenJin those audience^ and subsequent year^ the
Robin Hood character became a ^aple p^heijarsenal of playtime scenarios.™ Swords! bows and arrows and forests became the props and sets of one of theirrgenre of playM ForEhe next quarter-centurylwheneve! and wherever!
Ehaflfiln^vas shown, hundreds of thousands oft children fought to^d Sherwood of the evil prince and J sometimes, i n their reality, they would come uponj
Someone who remindedEhem of theitjarch enemy in reality.
Negotiation, mass meetings,'civil disobedience and confrontation part of their play and became part of the values which they would carry on Bjnto adulthood—an adulthood 195oland 1960s! would draw
upon those childhood experiences for guidance in confronting their own oppressive society.
^fflJ939 Marian Anderson was denied the opportunity, aftel having toured the European [continent’, to do a concert at Constitution Hall by the Daughters o* the America? RevolutiSB (Franklin 1980* 81). Her humil iatioTwaltalked abouc in black communities throughout America. Even after having been
al lowed to do an Easter Sunday morning concert at the Lincoln memorial® she could not find a single hotel in Washington, D.C. that would rent her a room. The entire country had experienced and was still experiencing the depression but black people had an additional burden of color to bear® Their level of consciousness had been steadily heightened by concepts they were being exposed to by the movies and the movies seemed to mirror their circumstance and serve as prompters as they went from one period to the next.
1939 also brought moviegoers a film which highlighted the evils of political machines. B'Mr. Smith Goes [o Washington" was a typical film of the period filled with ?hooey" and "yokeljjand the spirit of America! It had to do with a young a unsophisticated Jefferson Smith being appointed to complete a senatoralterm in Washington. At a dinner,Tin his honor, prior^to his departure for the capitoljhe let it be known that he recognized hispadequaciesi When called upon to make a speech he said: I don t think I'm going to be much help down there in Washington but I can tell you one thing-I'll never do anything to disgrace the office of U.SLSenator." (Capra 1939). Little did he know that the man whom he idolized was little more than a crook and that there could be found in Washington similarly honourably men as those encountered by Caesar and spoken of by Marc Anthony!
The audience is aware of what^s taking place long before Jefferson Smithjphey want to warn him but they cannot. Undoubtedly they began to wonder who was their "Mr. Paine"? Who were their crooks in high places and how much graf?were theylictims of. In his naivete, Jefferson Smith whistled himself into harms way without any notion of the riptides pulling at him. It burst upon him with such a sudden suddeness that all he could do was flee. He went back to the monuments he had visited on his first day in the nation's capitoll He read all of the inscriptions and reflected on all of the things he had been taught to believe about his country
and about what it stood for and was prepared to begin to believe that he had been duped. The institutions, the men—the things he had admired the most were shams. Black audiences who, as students, might have read of the Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, The Bill of Rights and other documents and great events and men of American History symphatized with him right along with white audiences. But it was more than a “tear jerking" scene for them. Their reality was identical to his playacting. His bags were packed and he was prepared to leave town in disgrace when Clarisa Saunders, his secretary, assistant and undeclared girlfriend appeared. They talked
and this is what was said:
Saunders’ When you get home, what are you going to tell those kids’ (Members of a boys club that he sponsored back home). Smith: I'm going to tell them the truth. They might as well Saunders^^don^t think they’ll believe you Jeff. You know, they're liable to look up at you with hurt faces and say. "Jeff, what did you do? Quit? Didn't you do something about
Jeff: Well what do you expect me to do? An honorary stooge like me against the Taylors and Paines and Machines and lies. Saunders:9 Your friend Mr. Lincoln had his Tay ors an<1 Paines and so did every other man who ever tried to lift a spot up off the ground. Odds against them didn t stop those men— they were fools that way. All the good that ever came in this would came from fools with faith like that. You know that Jeff You can't quit now—not you. And all the ^ylors ano Paines in Washington-their kind just throw big shadows that all. You didn't just have faith in Paine or in any other living man. You had faith in something jigger than that. You had plain, decent, everyday common rightness and this country could use some of that. Yeah. And so could the whole cockeyed world. A lot of it. ./-"'Aer the firstly you got here? Remember what you said about Mr. Linco • You said he was sitting up there waiting for someone to come along You were right. He was waiting for a man who could see his job and sail into it. That's what he was waiting for. A man who could tear into the Taylors and move them out into the open. I think he was waiting for you Jeff. He knows you can do it and so do I.
Jeff* What. Do what Sanders.
Sanders:! You just make up your mind that you re not going to quit and I'll tell you what. I've been thinking about it all the way back here. It's -,^ry-s°ob ">r° A tab water, but I think you can do it. (Capra
fThey took on the Taylors and the Paines and the machineB They took theifstand, in their firm belief, that good would triumph over evTj On the floor* of the U.Sj Senate I Jefferson Smith made his appeal to the people! He was certaS that*once the peopl?back home learned whalwas transpiring ^ha’th^wouldlallTto Vs aid. He held the floor for over twenty-three hours’ He was exhausted and then he learned that the machinS-eached out further thal hj imagined! None of whatTe had said had appearedV any of [the news pa person his home stateW^ven a paper that hS boys club attempted to Circulate was shut down and sane of the children were injured Bthe
MR"cBS announcer described Smith as being "one lone and simple American". (Capra fl939). H?s eloquence wasphj simplicity All of Capit^^M had turned ouRo JitnesfhTs collapse! He greeted them w§W
here's no compromise withMruthWThat's all I goV up on this Lloor to sayG Mien wasDt-a year ago seems like. Just get up off the ground. That's all I ask. Let up there with that lady that's up on top of this capitol dome—that lady that stands foiMiberty. Take a look at this country through her eyes Lfjyoubreall want to see something! You won't just see scenery.1 You'll see the whole parade of whatS man has carved out forghimself after centuries of M fighting.* Fighting for something that's better than jungle law. Fighting so that he canfttand on his own two feety free and decent, like he was created, no matter what race, [color or creed. That's what youill see. There s no place
ouMthere fotfigraft or greed or lies or compromise with human liberties! And if that's what the grownups have done with this world that was given to them then we d better get those boys camps started fast and see what the kids can . And it's not too late because ^his country is bigger than the Taylors or you or me or anything else.I Great principle don't get »lost once they come to lightJl They re right herM you just have to see them. |(Capra 19391.
The people were*fina^listening. It seemed that they were finally beginning to take^effe “on Smith "seriously! But the machine was not donel It had gotten its people to send more than^ifty^housand letters and jelegrams disavowing Jefferson Smith. Senator Paine, the "Silver Fox^
moved in for She kl'tlKHe had those baskets of letters and telegrams brought into the Senate Chambers in order to show all present there that the people of his state did not support Jefferson Smith. Upon exami ng several from different parcels] Smith reeled from the unexpected blow. He found a friendly face in the person of the President of^the Senate and gathered his last remaining stre'ngthTtoHpealIabout "lost
I guess this is Just another lost cause Mr? Paine. All yoiA people don't know about lost causes ■ Mr. Paine doesH He - said once they were; the only causes worth fighting for and.; he fought for them once for the only reason that any man evel fights for them---because of just one plain simple rule:B
* love thy neighborH And in this world made full.of hatred»ij
G a man who knows that one rule has a greaMtrustWYou know that rule Mr; Paine and I^oved you forMt just as my father did. And you know that yoi^Fight for the lost causes harder than for any other® Yes, you even die for them-ppike a mang we both knew Mr. Paine. You think I'm Licked?* You alW V'thinkM'm licked? Well I'm not licked. And I'm going to
Figh] here and fight for thiMlost! cause even if this room get filled with Ues like these and the Taylors and ‘ all their armies come marching into this place. Somebody'll ■Listen to meg (Capra 1939).
He fainted. But we all learned a lesson/. We learned that one cannot ■ver contemplate defeaB (Those conceptjconjieved in Childhood bore mifteen years later as the^vi Wrights movement got underway. Black people realized that (ot onlypere they outnumbered but that the national machMewas again" "hem. fn the souTF, whereBhe movementjad its begiSng( blacks were not even (econd class citizens because in order be a citizen of anwkind one needed access ballo^W Southern
■ blacHhad notloeen aUowed to UotMnMnMnoticeable numbers since the ■lose of Reconstruction Ln 18713 They agreed with Smith that there should
be ho compromise with "truth buS thejmac$i ne| compromised it consistently J Theylagreed that peopl (^including themselveWshould be allowed to "stand on their own(wo and (theyjgwere created, no matter
what race, color orjcreed". An oppressive society prevented that happening ■for black people but Hollywood was showing them the way to bring about change.
From the introduction of an acknowledgement of possible judicial actioS taken"against terrorism as depicted in the movie "Black Legion" and the few others of that genre made during that period, oppressed people inj the United States "particularly black people, began to come out of their malaise. The swashbuckling of Robin Hood and his "merry men" brought one extreme approach to a methodology forRemedying an oppressive conditionJ Mr. Smith offered a more contemplative and refined manner of confronting such a system. Each began to become a part of the manner black people would view their own condition! Before such films, they had been unable to fully appreciate the possibility of a better way of life! These simple offerings made it increasingly difficult to content themselves with the old ways! They saw that there were better ways and those ways became part of their objectives.
The depression began to come to an eEas the 1930s came to a close and the 1940s ushered in the Second World War. That era need to punctuated and there was no better way of doing|Tthan"by the production and release of John Steinbeck’s Rhe Grapes of Wrath" in 1940. That film gave us desolation I despair and displacement but not defeat. The setting was the dust bowl of1 Oklahoma and the impact that condition had on the people who lived therej They were tenant farmers! They were poor and illiterate® Thejlalso had a simple dignity. Owen Wister put it well: "A man’s sense of himself^ the most important thing that he has." (The Westerner 19*0). Those were evicted and with no where to go except to some place called California where they had heard that there was work to be had. They left the land that they Shad been born onj died on and buried in." (Ford 1940). It wasn’t easy! The scenes leading up to their departure were filled with melancholy! Ma Joad was seen burning momentoes of a lifetime and grandpa Joad didn't want to go. He had to be placed under the influence of an in-
toxicant and bod ^loaded on the back of thelruck. He died, perhaps of grief, the first day out. The whole Ramily Ma ^osd was the
first to articulate J reaction to theiJconditionj When asked ifjhe wasj [going to giv^he old place Inegast look" she responded by saying: "We're going to'califo^ia'ain’t we?j Alrightjlet's go to California. I never had my house pushed over before. Never^had my family stuck out on the road. Sever had to lose everything^ had 1940).
Wherever they went, they were chased off. BlacK audiences could readily identify with the treatment because they were no fl wel come anywise either.
good poSon of blacks who lived^Mthe south were tenant farmers od| sharecropper^and could easi 13 imagine themselves being gn^t hat same situation. Black peopletang the blues to describe their condition andjhe Joads did the same. At one site where they camped for the night, Rhese
going down thejroad feeling badM I’m going down the road feeling badM Km going down |the road tffeeljpg pad oh I ain't gonna be a'treated this wayM They fed me ora corn bread and beansM ■Theyifed me on corn bread and
They fed me on corn bread and bean Mo h Lordy, I ainjL'gonna be a'treated this
^Conditions grew worse jSomeone arrested for^^^Hing back and a
woman was shot- by a police officer and nothing was done
officer a mess those fort^ives make. Better get
the (Ford 194oH Connie ran out on his wife because things coi^inuedj
to grow worse and worse 1 FinaNy^Tom Joad, the oldest son, who had recently been paroled on a murder rap Ineared the end of his rope. As though thinking aloud, he said to his mothel "Ma, there comes a time when a man gets mad.
If there was a law they was working with maybe we could take it. but it ain't]
the law. They're working away at our spirit. Trying to make us cring and crawl—working on our decency.” (Ford 1940).
Blacks had had such experiences for years. They would go into a store and not be served until every white person there had been served. They could not try on clothing. They could not use rest rooms at gas stations. They were humiliated constantly and black men were always made to feel less than men in the presence of their women. Sometimes it became so overwhelming that they could not contain themselves any longer and would bristle or "talk back" and be beaten, arrested and lynched. Black audiences well identified with what was happening to the Joads and the others who were seeking some way to make sense out of what was happening to them. Ma, Tom and Rosie Sharon, his sister whose husband had run out on her, were in the cab of the truck as they drove to Tavares. A mob in the middle of the highway stopped them. For a moment, Tom considered defending himself, the women prevailed upon him not to do so. The mob approached the truck with laterns, flashlights and clubs. A self-appointed leader shouted: "Just where do you think you re going. We don't want no more oakies in this town. Just turn right around and don t you head north 'til the cotton's ready." (Ford 1940).
Tom Joad had to swallow his manhood. If he had ever heard of Owen Wister or what Wister had written, that night, on the road to Tavares, he had to disregard it. Black men had been emasculated in similar fashion many times. Their women and their children had observed it. The former understood well why they did so but the latter did not. In their play, in this instance, they changed the part of the good guy. They made him resist as Jefferson Smith had resisted and as Robin Hood had resisted. At that point in their young lives, they decided that they would, when they became men, resist. Their time would come in the 1950s.
The Joads helped us put the depression behind us. They brought in the 1940s on a note of optimism in spite of their trials and tribulations. They had learned something because of their own experiences and "Nr Deeds", in 1936, had helped them when he exemplified that there were some who were willing to lend assistance. Deeds, who had inherited a million dollars, encountered some difficulty in his effort to give it away to those who were needy. In a heart rending comment on the times he said:
From what I can see, no matter what system of government we have, there will always be leaders and always be be followers. Its like the road out in front of my house. It's on a steep hill. And every day I watch the cars climbing up. Some go lickety-split up that hill on high—some have to shift into second—and some spatter and shake and slip back to the bottom again. Same cars—same gasoline—yet some make it and some don't. And I say the fellas who can make the hill on high should stop once in a while and help those who can t. That s all I'm trying to do with this money. Help the fellas who can't make the hill on high. (Capra 1936).
Well, the Joads did not have a million dollars to give away but they did have spirit. They didn't really understand their strength because it had always been there—it was normal and it was expected. They supported each other but there was more to do and Tom Joad believed that he had something to offer which might help improve the human condition. Conditions had become such that he had to leave the camp and the family. He was going to just leave in the middle of the night but Ma Joad was awake. They went off to themselves and they talked and what they said illuminated much.
Tom: You know what I been thinking about? About Casey. About what he said, what he done. About how he died. And I remember all of it.
Ma: He was a good man.
Tom: And I've been thinking about us too. About our people living like pigs and good, rich land laying fallow. Or maybe one guy with a million acres and a hundred thousand farmers starving. And I've been wondering if all our folks got together and yelled...
Ma: Oh Toimiy, they'd drag you out and cut you down just like the done to Casey...
Tom: They're going to drive me anyways. Sooner or later they'd get me for one thing if not for another. 'Til then... Ma: Toircny, you not aiming to kill nobody?
Tom: No malnot that. That ain't it. It's just ■wen, as, long as I'm an outlaw anyways"maybe I can do something. Maybe I car? jusfl find out someth!ng,Must scrounge around and maybe find out what it iMthat's wrongjand see if there ain^ something can be done aboutjiti. I ain't thought!
lit alt out clear maMlOl can'tjj don't know enough.
Ma: How am II going to know about you Tommy? Why they could
- kill you and I'd never know.. They could hurt you. How am I gonna know?
TomBbwelll maybe its like Casey says-^fella ain't got a soul of hi Down—just a little piece of a bigjsoul. Jhe one Z big soul that belongs to everybodyLLThen... Ma: Then what Tom?
Tom: Then it don't matter.W'lH be Lil around in Lhe dark.
Ml'ID be everywhere—wherever you can look.- Wherever there'■
U a fight so hungry peopleDcan eat—I'll be there.* WhereveMI
■ there'JTaBop beating up a guy—I'lMb^ thereJUl'll be in the way guys yell whenithey're mad(| I'll be in the way kids laugh when^heyfere hungry and they know supper's ready. And when « the people are eating the stuff they've raised, living in the housegLthey build, 1^1] be there too. Ma: understand At
I Tom: ! Me neither ma.but Rts» just something^I' ve been thinking about] (Ford ]940) V|
Tom Joad disappeared into the nightw Blacks^i^the same during those years. They called '^flying by night14. TheyMlike Tom Joad and others, fearedlthe authorities overstepping thein authority and victimizing them simply became Key were poor or or blacR They Lived in fearH
because theyWved^g aMociety which did not respect basic human^gnw^H Earlier or^?hen they entered the Agricintural Department CampltheBwere treated as human beings and they were startled. Tom said to the manager: "Ma'll JsureTike Kt here. She ain't been treated decent for a longWiile." (Ford 19401 Mhey knew, as Tom hadjaidlthat the circumstance "which theM faced were noj of theijdoing even though they were made to paW The^lwere intimidatedBchased,^iumi1iated, threatened, beatemiand made to doubt their own worth but they got throughfttj As they drove off to the final picking place, Fresno, California! Ma Joad summed il up eloquently when Me saidW Fl ain't nevemgonna be scared no more. pwasShough. For^while it looked as though we was beat—good and beat. Looked like we didn t have nobody mn the whole wide world but enemies—like nobody waslriendly no more. Made
me feel kinda bad and scared too, like we was lost and nobody cared." (Ford 1940). Her husband, Pa, who had had his place as the head of the family taken away by forces beyond his control, listfully commented: "We shore taken a beating.” (Ford 1940). Ma spoke the postscript: "That's what makes us tough. Rich fellows come along and they die and their kids ain't no good and they die out but we keep a'cornin'. We're the people that live. They can't wipe us out, they can't lick us. We'll go on forever Pa because- we're the people." (Ford 1940).
Musicals, comedies, westerns, detectives, horror, fantasies and melodramas; the movies of the period offered a wide variety of each genre. ■■They gave people a coninon reality however different the actual locations of their everyday lives." (Tudor 1974:13). The films of the 1940s were ideal for nurturing among black people, those concepts introduced in the previously cited films: justice, democracy, liberty, equality and other precepts of the American way of life. The country became involved in the Second World War and part of what Hollywood did during that decade was make propaganda films which highlighted the evils of nazism and fascism and the good of democracy. It out did itself. With each patriotic film filled with dialogue espousing democracy and, in effect, merchandising concepts of liberty and equality, it brought America and Americans closer to realizing its own shortcomings in that regard to people of color who were themselves citizens of the United States.
The 1940s might well be thought of as a time for simmering in regards to the domestic scene. The war took a great deal of the energy of the country and the movies of that decade represented that mood. From Casablanca (1942), Watch On The Rhine (1943), Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944), To Have and Have Hot (1945), A Walk In The Sun (1946), Dark Passage (1947), Fighter Squadron (1948) and others, that decade characterized by Americanism
and patriotism helpedl"e-educate a large portion of the population in those termsj GentlemanL Agreement (1947)1 It's A Wonderful Life (1946), Intrude?! In the Dust (19491 and Pinky (1949) helped bring about a heightened awareness of intolerance in America. Jackie Robinson broke into the Major Leagues as the first black baseball player and It seemed that things were preparing to turn for the better.' However, black American!were not wirHng to waij to be given their opportunity at alj that democracy held one’perso! at a time.
Once again the into play. A whole new set of experiences
had occurred and oun understanding ofldemocracnwas much greater Our exM posure to Hmejas made us lessjreceptive of intolerance and oppression and we were better equip Andrew Tudor describeslthe
role which the finema played and cor^nues to play quite weH
There no immediate need to document the ways in which
cinema has entered ourjMves. A moment's reflection by any
but a recluse is sufficient! With the coming of film, for the first time there was a widespread common articulation of the beliefs! aspirationWantagonisrnMDand doubts of the huge populations of modern societies! For the first time men
■could share the same sentiments! simultaneously^and in 4 ■ <
every place thatjithey could run to a picture show. (Tudor 1974:13-14).
Among the movies that we saw during the opening years of the 1950s were Wagonmalter 11950) with Mormons being oppressed by gentiles, a remake of Lei Miserables with Jean Vai jean being hounded and oppressed by police inspector JaverR In Rhe 1935 version, which Jas better, i triplications Pight have eluded us. However /i" 1952 when it walremadeS black people were bettea positioned to consider how it related to them. The Ox Bow Incident (1953) gave us yet another view oiMynchings which only punctuated what we had^seen^two years earlier in Storm Warning (1951). Lynchings were commoiffn real fly fojbl ack people and jhey discovered that there were othej whose lives were also at risk. On Jhe Waterfront (1954) brought’yet anothej dimension to the widening sphere of oppression with longshoremen being
terrorized and oppressed by the mob.
Hardly a year passed during that period following the close of World War II and the mid-1950s that a film on the subject of oppression was not released. In many of those movies, the stars who had been heroes to ten to fifteen year old children in the 1930s, had grown to even more heroic stature at mid century. Those children had also grown up to become men and women. Some had gone off and fought in a war to rid the world of oppression and their disposition for tolerating intolerance had all but disappeared. Still, there was an uncertainty about breaking the law in spite of the fact that the laws were breaking them.
Many appeals were made by the victims of oppression, in the United States, to bring about some relief. As Robin Hood had done earlier, resolution was sought through negotiation. Those took place in the courts as the 1940s came to a close and the 1950s opened and they ranged from gaining the right to participate in election primaries (Smith, v Allwright 1944), ending jim crow practices in interstate conmerce (Morgan v Virginia 1946), invalidating restrictive covenants in housing (Shelley v Kraemer 19.48), desegregation of the armed forces (Executive Order 9981 1948), establishment of a Fair Employment Practices Commission (Executive Order 8802 1941), the right to an equal educational opportunity (Missouri Ex. Rel. Gaines v Canada 1938) to the right to attend the professional graduate schools (Sipuel v Oklahoma 1948, McLaurin v Oklahoma State Regents 1950 and Sweatt v Painter 1950). (McCloskey 1960:208-219). A culmination of those activities came with the Supreme Court decision in the Brown v The Board of Education case of 1954 which outlawed segregation in public schools. (Franklin 1980:409). Progress was made but at a snail's pace and not with reprecussions.
White Citizens Councils, yet another rebirth of the Ku Klux Klan and other terrorist groups appeared to neutralize, through acts of violence
and economic oppression and threats, whatever gains might have been made by black Americans in the courts. The south was far removed from the seat of Federal law and did not make hast to obey the law of the land. Blacks residing in those states of the south knew that they lived beyond the protection of the law and that they could be punished through an abuse of power by local authorities. (Franklin 1980: 459). Beatings, bombings, murders and being chased away became more common practice as the 1950s got underway. Something had to be done, but what?
Black Americans got a notion, and I remember it well, while viewing the movie "Wagonmaster" in 1950. The movie started out with a group of Mormons being chased out of town and with the Elder saying to them: "Well folks, looks like we're going to have to leave this hospitable community." (Ford 1950). We didn't understand Mormonism. We only knew that they were somehow different from the other people in that town just as were different from the other people of our town. We felf that it wasn't right for them to be chased out. A medicine wagon troup had also been chased out and came close to dying in the desert as a result. The town had been intolerant of both groups and when the Mormons came upon the strained troupers, some of the former were intolerant of the latter. We didn't think that was right either. The good guys were not quite as good, at that point, as they had initially been because some took on some of the characteristics of the townspeople. Just as we felt that someone should do something about our circumstances, we felt that someone should do something about their's—sooner or later somebody'll have to do something.
Then the Cleggs showed up. They were a danger to the townspeople, the Mormons and the medicine show people. They had robbed a bank, killed a teller and planned future criminal acts even as the old man represented himself as being a religious person with such remarks as: "The Lord 11 bless
you for thSbrother! He marks^the sparrow's fall." (Ford 1950)J We knew that the Cleggs would get their's and they did! But not until after they had intimidated the people of the wagon train? raped an Indian woman and laughed at the sufferings of others. Two cowpokes! who had been hired on as wagonj master and guides, slew the Cleggs but’the intolerance of the others was left in pl ace I Just as we had predicted’sooner or laterlsomebody would do
Just as movie goers do about what we saw on the silver
screen! We drew comparisons with what was seen with what actually was. We contemplated treating those who were a threat to us as such people were treated in filiAjhe movies offered options ranging from negotiation to Confrontation and we evaluated them al fl All, depending on ^circumstances, could be utU-ed and later, in the course of the civil rights movement I would be.
During those turbulent years of the early 1950s, black southerners lived in constant fear* Just as* ijthe moviet’Black Legionjj, theErrorists came at night with^their guns, lope^bombsl whips and burning crossed Rural blacks remained close to home after dark and urban dwellers did not venture far and rarely alonel Dawn was perhaps the most restful were not early riserland for an hour or so, the world was solemn, peaceful and beautifua
Such an Idyllic setting opened the movie "Shane" In The snow capped Grand TetonsTtowering trees, low-hanging clouds! green fields and pastures, a lively stream and a crude log house with blue smoke drifting north-westward*from a chimney, farm animals! a deer, a woman, a man and a boyTliving in terror and shane rode into the valley and to the Starrett farm.
Shortly after his arrival to the farm, Riker! the local cattle baronJ
and five ofThi^ men road up and uireatened Joe Starrett^ Starrett had thought that Shane was one of them and had asked him to leave. Shane was a gun fighter and was trying to leave his past behind him. He knew no one in the valley and was just passing through to "one place or another someplace where
he had never beerl" He returned and whejasked who he was simpljidentified himsS as a friend of Starrett. Riker and his men leftl Shane was asked to Tta^the littje boy was"happy and from that points he storyKT presented as through Shane and Starrettfstrucj up affriendship andgane
agreed to remain and work for ng but toEst
help with the work." (Stevens 1953).
The following day, Shane found out just how bad the relationship between the Ksodbusters" and the cattlemen actual ^wa^. '5 store he
bought'work Rothes and picked up a shipmenjof barbed wire. He then went into the’saloon area to purchase a boffle of "soda pop" for fcjttle Joe®He haffio way of knowing that he would not be welcome In the saloon simply because he worked on a farm J The cow punchers laughed a^iim, accused him of smellfg of pigland one, Chris "Now you
pop get oift oLhere an^ stay out of here.^ (Stevens 1953).
Meanwhile, back at the Starretl homestead, one of thew neighbors, Ernie Wright, is reporting that Rikers men cut his fences, stampeded the [cattle through and the onHthing left were stubs. Wright had
frown weary of the whole and had decided to leave. Joe, iI exasperated and hil wifejMarianj attempted to convince Ernie not to give up Earnie had had it. He saidl "I'm wore down and of being p-
suited by them fellows’called a pig farmer. WelJ who knows what comes next« (Stevens 1953). Joe decided that they needed t^call a meeting of the farmers atjis place and Ernie agreed to give jt one more go.
Eighlof the farmers was Ernie, >
Torrey, Johnson, Starret and Shane. Even though there was just a few of them, they had a mass meeting. Like the story goes; it was a dark and stormy night and Ernie said: "It's getting so I don't like to ride at night."
Within days of his arrival, the pieces were moving into place for the confrontation. Most of the other farmers seemed to hope that some miracle would take care of them. Starrett had always known better and Shane understood that immediatedly. A fight erupted in Grafton's saloon the Saturday before the Fourth of July celebrations. First it was Shane and his nemesis Calloway. Then it was Shane and all the cowmen. Little Joe recognized the odds. He went into the saloon, took Shane by the hand and said: "Shane, come on. There's too many. There's too many Shane." (Stevens 1953). Shane did not leave even though he was outnumbered and knew that he would probably get his brains bashed because he knew that winning such fights was not the reason to fight. Shane showed us that sometimes you fight because if you don't you may as well be dead. He showed us that we have to be willing to get up one more time than we're knocked down. Fred Lewis said: "That's the trouble with this country—there ain't a marshall for a hundred miles." (Stevens 1953). For blacks in Natchez, Mississippi and in other places, the nearest law was over one thousand miles in Washington, D.C. and even that was questionable. Then it was Shane and Joe against the cowmen and they won.
All that happened in the movie, with the exception of the fight, also happened with and to black people. The fight didn't solve the problem. It did, however, help move it closer to a final solution. Not many days later, Torrey was murdered. Fred started packing up to leave. Joe tried to talk him into staying. Fred's wife didn't want her man dead and Fred was willing to use any excuse to high-tail it out of the valley. Joe told him that he would be awfully disappointed if Fred did not at least come to Torrey's funeral. Fred's daughters looked at him and Fred managed to find the dregs of a long
lost manhood and said that they would attend since the cemetary was on the way out of the valley anyway.
It was at that funeral that Shane articulated for all who were present just what the struggle was all about when he said:
You know what he wants you to stay for? Something that mean more to you than anything else—your families—your wives and kids. Like you Lewis: your girls. It was the same with the Toreys. You've got a right to stay here and grow up and be happy. That's up to you people to have nerve enough to not give it up. (Stevens 1953).
The right to stay there. A right guaranteed in the Constitution but sometimes forgotten. A right of equality that is self-evident as stated in the Declaration of Independence that the farmers had just celebrated a few days earlier. Those "sodbusters" had rights and so did black people. We needed Shane to remind us. The President didn't, the governors of the several states didn't, the mayors of the several municipalities didn't. None of the people who had sworn to uphold the Constitution reminded us or remembered that we had rights. Shane did. As that movie was shown and re-shown, it hammered into our consciousness that we had rights and that if those duly elected officials would not protect them for us even if they were "three days ride away" we'd do it ourselves. We would ride into Grafton's Saloon and take care of the Rikers like shane did if we had to. We would take care of the Cleggs if we had to. We would take care of the evil Princes if we had to and the Black Legions, Klans, Citizens Councils, governors, mayors, policemen and people who rode around in pickup trucks taunting us. We made the movie "Network" possible because in the mid-1950s, we became mad as hell.
As it is possible to be negatively influenced by sex and violence in the movies, it is equally possible to be positively influenced by concepts of democracy, liberty, equality and justice.
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Cr 1977* Slow*Fade To Black. New York! Oxford A. Knopf, Inc.
Dyi971h°The Politics of Equality! New York I The Bobbs-Merri 11 Coropanyl IncB
1952 Invisible Man. New York: Vintage Books.
Fri967inTheOhNegroPIn 20th Century America. New York! Vintage Sooks F^1 WO^From^Slavery To Freedom. New York: Alfred e! Knopf, Inc.
U1960* Motion Pictures. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press.
Fr!981|ThelouthdAnd Film! Jackson, Mississippi! University Press of Miss, ^l^e" * Rendezvous With Destiny. New Yorkl Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
1980 The Movie Quote Book J New York: Bonanza BooksH
In?979S’HS5!|Tte Story of the Ku Klux Klan. New York-j G.P. Putnam’s Sons. »
The*American Almanac. New York: Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers. , ^1960^The^erican Supreme Court! Chicago! University of Chicago
Rai970]’censorship'of The Movies. Madison: University of Wisconsin
SU1982 ^te'Groups In America! New York! Anti Defamation League of B'Na!B"Rith.
^^1981’ Hollywood And The American Imaged Westport, Conn.! Arlington
TU1974 AImage And Influence I Studies In The Sociology of Film! New Yor kJ St. Martin's Press.
W°n74rdThe’sVt?""ge Career of Jim Crowl New York: Oxford University Press *
Capra, Frank Director, "Mr. Deeds Goes To Town”, (1936).
Capra, Frank Director, "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington", (1939).
Curtiz, Michael Director, "The Adventures of Robin Hood", (1
Ford, John Director, "The Grapes of Wrath", (1940). Ford, John Director, "Wagonmaster", (1950).
Heisler, Stuart Director, "Storm Warning", (1951). Kazan, Elia Director, "On The Waterfront", (1954). Mayo, Archie Director, "Black Legion", (1936). Milestone, Lewis Director, "Les Miserables", (1952). Stevens, George Director, "Shane", (1953).
Wellman, William Director, "Ox Bow Incident", (1943).