America Divided (An 8 Part Series, Divided in 4 Episodes) 2016
Produced by Various Producers
Directed by Various Directors
DVD, color, 4 hrs., 30 min.
College - General Adult
Sociology, Social Justice, Immigration, Housing, Criminal Justice, American Politics, Urban Areas
Date Entered: 01/02/2019Reviewed by LaRoi Lawton, Library & Learning Resources Department, Bronx Community College of the City University of New York
America Divided“...features docu-narratives around inequality in education, housing, healthcare, labor, criminal justice and the American political system –all woven into an eight story, five –part series. This production follows high profile correspondents as they explore aspects of inequality related to their own biographies. The correspondents include: Common, an African American rapper and actor; Rosario Dawson, An American actress, producer, and political activist; America Ferrera, Zach Galifianakis, Norman Lear, Amy Poehler, Peter Sarsgaard, and Jesse Williams.”
America Divided Series
Disc 1: Part I: The System: Policing and Incarceration(43 min.)Lonnie Rashid Lynn, aka Common, returns to his hometown Chicagoand explores the tragic incident involving the shooting and killing of Laquan McDonald by a white police officerand highlights an all too common fact: the many faces of racism are behind the killing of American citizens. He also looks at what concerned citizens on both sides are doing to stop this kind of tragedy whose origins may behistorical,but have continued, and are now a contemporaryproblem.
Disc 1: Part II: Something in the Water: Flint’s Water Crisis(42 min.)Rosario Dawson, actor and activist explores the 2016 Flint, Michigan water crisis to find answers to how an entire city’s water supply could be contaminated with lead and other pollutants for so long without local and state government officials not being aware of this serious issue.
Disc 2: Part I: Class Divide: The Battleto Fix Inequality in Education(41 min.)Likehis alliesin this documentaryseries,Jesse Williams, anotheractor and activist tackles the South St. Petersburg, Florida school system where education has failed on several levels for many Black and Latino students. It becomes evident that these specific issues overlap existingissues that eventually ruin the lives ofminority students in this county based on raceand culture.
Disc 2: Part II: A House Divided: Inequality in Housing in New York City(45 min.) Norman Lear, an American television writer and producer, and LB Williams, an African American actor, explore the inequality in housing in New York City. While we have ‘fair housing laws’ we do not have fair housing as this segment clearly illustrates.
Disc 3: Part I: Home Economics: Domestic Workers and Labor(34 min.)Actor, comedian and director, Amy Poehlerexplores the plight of domestic workers, many of whom are women working as caregivers, housekeepers and nannies for working parents. They are undocumented, poorand living day-to-day, paycheck-to-paycheck.It is the domestic workers’ ‘invisibility’ that makes this segment so poignant.
Disc 3: Part II: Democracy for Sale: Money in Politics and Voting Rights(48 min.)Actor, comedian and writer, Zach Galifianakos looks into North Carolina politics and money and how the very rich have ‘hijacked’ the state of North Carolina by targeting education, redistricting, healthcareand environmental protections with drastic cuts that put human lives in real jeopardy. “While money may be freespeech”in North Carolina, the fight for justice knows no color.
Disc 4: Part I; The Epidemic: Addiction and Deindustrialization(37 min.)Peter Sarsgaard, an American actor and former drug addict travelsto Dayton, Ohio to explore and investigate why this city has become a symbol of inequality.
Disc 4: Part II; Out of Reach: Undocumented Immigrants and Reproductive Rights(43 min.)America Georgine Ferrera, an American actress known for her leading role as Betty Suarez on the American Broadcasting Company's comedy-drama television series Ugly Betty(2006-10) looks at the challenges and difficulties faced by many Central American refugees in the state of Texas.