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The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975

Directed by Goran Hugo Olsson

Sweden, 2011

Cornerhouse, 22 October 2011

Black Power

This film compiles various news/current affairs footage taken by Swedish film makers, charting the emergence of a radical black movement following the death of Martin Luther King in 1968.

Several voices respond to the footage, notably those of Erykah Badu, Talib Kweli and Angela Davis – who is also interviewed on film, at the time of her trial.  Angela Davis’s impassioned response to an interviewer’s naive question about violence in America is terrifying, an extraordinary moment.  She’s the very image of the woman Yeats fell for in ‘No Second Troy’.

Watch also Stokely Carmichael’s in-depth interview with his mother.  He had a formidable forensic intelligence, did Carmichael, and an unswerving analytical gaze.  His commitment to truth bestowed on him the gift of integrity.

Someone (maybe Kweli, I’m unsure) says here of this generation of black thinkers and activists, ‘They made sacrifices so we didn’t have to.’  And so they did, absolutely.  Every African-American, no every American – and not least Barack Obama – owes them a debt.

An invaluable record of a vanished time and place.