Trade in your item
Get up to a $0.69
Gift Card.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon

Slavery and the Making of America DVD Set

4.5 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
Price
New from Used from
DVD
(Feb 09, 2005)
"Please retry"
4
$599.99

Geek Boutique 2016 Geek Boutique HQP


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

SLAVERY AND THE MAKING OF AMERICA is a landmark, four-part series that examines the history of slavery in the United States and the integral role it played in shaping the new country's development.

Breaking with conventional documentary production approaches, the series producers, PBS's Thirteen/WNET New York, have used dramatic re-enactments to take viewers back in time and deep into the slave experience. Much of the story is presented from a unique vantage point - through the eyes of the enslaved.

As factually represented in this series, American slavery evolved from a loosely defined labor system which provided some protection under the law, into the tightly regulated enslavement without recourse, based solely on race.

Underscoring how slavery impacted the growth of this country's Southern and Northern states; the series examines issues still relevant today. The variety of cultures from which the slaves originated provided the budding states with a multitude of skills that had a dramatic effect on the diverse communities. From joining the British in the Revolutionary War, to fleeing to Canada, to joining rebel communities in the U.S., the slaves sought freedom in many ways, ultimately having a far-reaching effect on the new hemisphere they were forced to inhabit.

Acclaimed actor Morgan Freeman narrates the series, which features a score by Michael Whalen.

Programs in this series:
Program 1: The Downward Spiral
Program 2: Liberty in the Air
Program 3: Seeds of Destruction
Program 4: The Challenge of Freedom

Features:
English Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired,
Spanish Subtitles

Review

This four part series, which aired on PBS earlier this year, belongs in every high school library in the country... --School Library Journal

...the series deftly balances strong personal stories with insights into the horrible symbiotic relationship between Northern growth and Southern slavery.... this is recommended. --Booklist

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Morgan Freeman
  • Directors: William R. Grant
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Ambrose
  • DVD Release Date: February 9, 2005
  • Run Time: 240 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0007IOTJ8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,920 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Verified Purchase
I have watched and re-watched this series on PBS, and with each episode I always go away having learned something. The researchers and writers were thorough, the re-enactments are well-played*, and the tempo of each segment is appropriate. Morgan Freeman is the perfect choice for a narrator (even better than Whoopie Goldberg in Unchained Memories); he speaks like a wise, maturing uncle versed in the intricacies of a long, unpleasant family history.

My favorite segments are those on David Walker's call to resistance; a certain Miss Freeman, who successfully sued for her freedom; and Col. Tye's band of 18th century guerilla warriors.

*Such re-enactments, when accurately presented, are essential to helping viewers understand the realities of the era, as there are so few photographs and no moving pictures in existence from this lengthy period in American history. (As the narrator says, "America was a slave-holding society longer than it has been a 'free' society.")
1 Comment 40 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Verified Purchase
The information provided in the cds was thorough, diverse, and accurate. It gives the viewer the impression that the series was produced with the care that only serious lovers of pure history can provide. I also appreciated that the historians featured on the various cds were not solely of African American lineage. There were well-rounded views and opinions expressed.
Comment 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Verified Purchase
As an African-American I am interested in movies about Black history, Black culture, and life during slavery and historical black events.
As a result I purchased about a dozen DVDs on various subject matter which I am just now getting around to viewing.
This DVD gave me more insight into the slavery aspect during the period before we became a nation.
Each DVD was approx. 55 minutes long I would have liked to have had more because of the price, never less this is fine addition to my collection and I recommend it to others for its educational value.
Comment 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
I watched this over and over so that I could justify using it as a teaching tool to college and HS students. I grew tired of presentations on slavery ignoring or missing America's economic gain. Therefore, I was most impressed by this PBS series mentioning it. Yes, its inconvenient to say that the Industrial Revolution would not have happened without the free labor of slaves. (oh, yes, some African/Blacks did get 40 acres and a mule but, it was taken away by a former confederate soldier who later became a government official...). Henry Ford, J.P. Morgan, or even Bill Gates, hang on the coattails of the "planters" who made big money directly from African slave labor. The "planters" created the first IMAGES of superiority because they had more money, more control/power over many, and a "position." Believe me, slavery was building America's economic FUTURE not just imposing a sense of superiority. In a morbid sort of way slavery worked out pretty good for the American economy we live in today! Trust me when I say this, it means something to have an image of finacial power, even if you are poor, its the indelible IMAGE of having money, position, and power, that is most effective. A professor told me once that America is "ahistorical" I like that word. America concedes that slavery existed at one time and is over(whew!)but, the idea that some have benefitted financially, directly and indirectly from American slavery, might be an inconvenient truth. See "Centrix Financial...apologizes...slavery..." Something like that.
Comment 57 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Verified Purchase
This roughly four-hour documentary, "Slavery and the Making of America," is a concise look at the nearly two and a half centuries of slavery from the first arrival of black indentured servants at the Jamestown Colony in 1619 through the end of the Civil War in 1865. In fact, this documentary also covers the rise of black political power in the South after the war and the impact of the Ku Klux Klan following the end of Reconstruction.

This four-part PBS series covers all the bases and manages to be both scholarly and enthralling at the same time. Here's what makes this documentary work so well:

[] Using Morgan Freeman as the narrator was a stroke of genius. His voice grabs the viewers' attention and doesn't let go. (Hey, he manages to keep my high school sophomores riveted!)

[] In addition to Freeman as the narrator, the makers of this documentary utilize numerous historians and scholars to tell the story providing not only facts, but their own perspectives. This variety of sources makes for compelling listening.

[] Throughout all four discs, personal slave experiences are told: John Punch, Mum Bett, Harriet Jacobs, Louis Hughes, Solomon Northup, Robert Smalls. Individual stories, but with shared experiences.

I use this in its entirety every year (along with reading Julius Lester's "To Be a Slave") to provide the necessary background before reading "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn." Slavery all too often is trivialized in textbooks, and this documentary goes a long way toward providing students with a basic understanding of the slave experience. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Comment 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Verified Purchase
I found this set of DVD's superb. It is not only factual and stimulating, it is also quite watchable. I teach a history class to senior citizens and plan on using it in my class. They will not only love it, but also end up much better informed about this central institution in our history.Slavery and the Making of America DVD Set
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews


Forums



What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?