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The Birth of a Nation Film Review Essay

The Birth of a nation denotes a film by D. W. Griffith that was riddled with racist connotations and implications. In part, it was used to show African Americans, especially the men as lacking intelligence and further, prone to control of the white Americans. Ideally, it also brought out white Americans as being superior to the African Americans. The worst aspect of the film is that it painted the Klu Klux Klan as heroes and their cause as being real and profitable to the American population.

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The Africa Americans protested against the film and with the help of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) arranged or organized protests and demonstrations against the film organizers and the film. From the onset, the NAACP pushed for the banning of the film, and later boycotting of the film by the American population, even though they later reduced their attention to specific scenes in the film. The African American individuals, aside from the NAACP, took to the streets to and riots in protest to the film. Ideally, the film was seen as motivation to white Americans to attack and impose on the African American citizens in a bid to be as heroic. (Rosenzweig, 2014)

Among the challenges they faced, was an uncooperative film producers who rode on the controversy to make more sales instead of editing the content as advised. Additionally, the team faced uncooperative officials in the film censorship boards, both at the national level and state levels. However, to tackle this effectively, they took on the approach of handling these offices on an individual state basis. This ensured they had success in some states and this easily influenced the decisions of the other officials. A huge amount of challenge was from the government side, where the president was seen as an interested party in publicizing of the film. However, in a letter President Wilson is quoted as having been unaware of the nature of the film, and would have allowed it if he had been (Wilson, 1915).

References: The Birth of a Nation Film Review Essay

Rosenzweig, R. (2014). “Art [and History] by Lightning Flash”: The Birth of a Nation and Black Protest. Retrieved January 20, 2014, from Center for HIstory and New Media:

Wilson, W. (1915). Letter from Woodrow Wilson to Joseph Tumulty. New York.

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