The documentary, Slavery and the making of America,
was a very interesting and eye-opening. I personally learned a lot from this
film, never really knowing the true story of African American’s until seeing
this documentary. I believe the Slavery and the making of America film has
affected me in many different ways, making me feel proud, happy, sad, respectful,
and expanded my knowledge. African American slaves built this wonderful country
to allow us and others to have the opportunities that we do and endure the benefits
it has to offer. Some African Americans today still feel the need to earn the
respect of other fellow citizens, I believe that should not be the case. After
everything these African American’s that were victims of slave trade have done
and been put through, they still had it in their hearts to forgive the
atrocities that were committed against them. These slaves deserve our respect
for their contribution to the existence of our country, their ability to
forgive, and the love and devotion that was given for this world. That being
said, why do they still at times not feel respected around our country today? I
believe that’s the least they deserve! The two parts of the four-part documentary
we watched where “Liberty in the Air” and “The Challenge of Freedom”. Liberty
in the air was between the 1740s-1830s and taught us about the expansion of
slavery in the colonies and the evolution of African American culture. During
this part of the film, land owners became less dependent on slave trade, allowing
new generations of slaves to develop unique culture qualities of the African American
life. I thought it was interesting learning about Thomas Jefferson’s slave, Jupiter,
and how they grew up together as best friends playing together every day and
how he would grow up to work for the boy he grew up playing with. Something else
I found surprising was how many slaves Thomas Jefferson had when he was
president, even though he was for appealing slavery. Finally, part four, The
Challenge of Freedom which shows us the transformation of the Civil War from a
struggle for union to a battle about slavery and the Reconstruction through
slave Robert Smalls, who is from South Carolina. In this episode we see Robert
Smalls escape for freedom, serve in the military, and spend some time as a
congressman after the civil war. Throughout this episode and learning about
Robert Smalls life events, we also see the rise of the KKK, the end of
reconstruction and the new oppression that replaced it, as well as the problems
of this period in time in American history were uncovered. African Americans
began to read, write, and tell their stories and began to feel a little bit of
freedom. I thought Robert Smalls was a very brave and courageous man as he
never seemed afraid. Robert Smalls showed us not only do we hold our life in
our hands, but we hold our death in our hands also.


I'm Erica!

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