Why do we dance? African-American social dances started as a way for enslaved Africans to keep cultural traditions alive and retain a sense of inner freedom. They remain an affirmation of identity and independence. In this electric demonstration, packed with live performances, choreographer, educator and TED Fellow Camille A. Brown explores what happens when communities let loose and express themselves by dancing together.
This story is the retelling of Robert Smalls' escape from slavery with his entire family in tow. With a plan "as dangerous as it was brilliant," Smalls commandeers a Confederate ship and successfully navigates it out of Charleston's blockaded port and into the hands of the Union army.
Although raised in a prosperous and prestigious African-American home in Tuskegee, Ala., Sammy Younge found himself drawn most to the civil rights movement. While the cause cost him his life, his actions and determination helped to transform this Southern city.
This story follows a girl who befriends the first African American to attend High Point Central High School, as a result of desegregation. What begins as an unintended and awkward experience in the cafeteria, becomes a strong and admirable friendship.
Bayard Rustin was an African American leader who worked for the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) in the 1940s and 1950s for equal rights for all Americans using nonviolence. In this story, he writes about the struggle for an African American man to order a simple hamburger at a restaurant in the Midwest.