Clarice and Kwami are the co-directors of the Washitaw Foothills Youth Media Arts & Literacy Collective and co-convenors of the Arkansas Peace & Justice Memorial Movement. They have agreed to join the Arkansas PBS family as monthly bloggers that share their informed opinions on current events and PBS programs. Their blog will alternate each month in written and video form.
Here, in the first installment, is their reaction to the PBS documentary "Driving While Black,” which will re-broadcast on Arkansas PBS on Friday, Feb. 19, at 7 p.m.
“Driving While Black” chronicles the riveting history and personal experiences – at once liberating and challenging, harrowing and inspiring, deeply revealing and profoundly transforming – of African Americans on the road from the advent of the automobile through the seismic changes of the 1960s and beyond. The documentary explores the deep background of a recent phrase rooted in realities that have been an indelible part of the African American experience for hundreds of years – told in large part through the stories of the men, women and children who lived through it. The documentary draws on a wealth of recent scholarship and is based on and inspired in large part by Gretchen Sorin’s recently published study of the way the automobile and highways transformed African American life across the 20th century ("Driving While Black: African American Travel and the Road to Civil Rights" (W.W. Norton, 2020)).
In the vlog, the Abdul-Beys also discuss structural violence and mention Kwami's 2001 award-winning book, "THE TABLES HAVE TURNED: A Street Guide to Guerrilla Lawfare,” which is available free for download.
To learn more about the film “Driving While Black,” visit pbs.org/show/driving-while-black/.
To learn more about the Arkansas Peace & Justice Memorial Movement backstory, check out the October 2020 issue of Little Rock Soiree Magazine and the Healing Together episode of the Southern Inspirations podcast. To learn more about Rosanne Cash's APJMM connection, read the "Taking A Stand" article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Also, check out the APJMM YouTube Channel.