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Black History Month

Alabama Public Television explores the history and celebrates the contributions of African Americans with special programs throughout the month of February.

Slavery By Another Name
Sunday, Feb. 2 at 2:30pm
A Sundance Film Festival selection for 2012, this documentary based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Wall Street Journal senior writer Douglas A. Blackmon, explores the little-known story of the post-Emancipation era and the labor practices and laws that effectively created a new form of slavery in the South that persisted well into the 20th century.

The Quiltmakers of Gee's Bend
Monday, Feb. 3 at 9:00pm
For more than 150 years, the women of Gee's Bend, Alabama, have made quilts reflecting their history and daily lives. Over generations, they worked in isolation, continuing to inhabit the remote plantation land their parents once slaved. Today, art critics worldwide compare them to the great creative enclaves of the Italian Renaissance.

Thursday, Feb. 6 at 9:00pm
In the Spring of 1962, a group of students from Miles College led a boycott of Birmingham's downtown merchants, supported by Miles College's President, selected faculty, local housewives and members of Birmingham's white community. STAND tells the often overlooked story of this chapter in the fight against segregation, the success of which led Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to come to Birmingham

American Masters: Alice Walker: Beauty in Truth
Friday, Feb. 7 at 9:00pm
Most famous for her seminal novel "The Color Purple," writer / activist Alice Walker celebrates her 70th birthday. Born February 9, 1944, into a family of sharecroppers in rural Georgia, her life unfolded during the violent racism and seismic social changes of mid-20th century America. Her mother, poverty and participation in the Civil Rights Movement were the formative influences on her consciousness, becoming the inherent themes in her writing. The first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for Literature, Walker continues to shine a light on global human rights issues.

For Love of Liberty: The Story of America's Black Patriots
Sunday, Feb. 9 at 3:00pm
Dramatic readings from a collection of letters, diaries, speeches and military records that document and acknowledge the sacrifices and accomplishments of African-American service men and women since the earliest days of the republic. The story spans the Revolution to Afghanistan and examines why, despite enormous injustice, these heroic men and women fought so valiantly for freedoms they themselves did not enjoy. Halle Berry hosts.

Clinton 12
Thursday, Feb. 13 at 9:00pm
James Earl Jones narrates the story of 12 black students who, on August 27, 1956 in Clinton, Tenn., walked into the first public high school in the South to desegregate after the U.S. Supreme Court's Brown vs. the Board of Education decision.

The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross
Sunday, Feb. 16 3:00 - 7:00pm &
Sunday, Feb. 23 2:00 - 4:00pm
This six-hour series chronicles the full sweep of African-American history, from the origins of slavery on the African continent through more than four centuries of remarkable historic events up to the present. Presented and written by Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the series draws on some of America’s top historians and heretofore untapped primary sources, guiding viewers on an engaging journey across two continents to shed new light on the experience of being African American.

Mr. Dial Has Something to Say
Monday, Feb. 17 at 9:00pm
Former steelworker Thornton Dial of Alabama neither reads nor writes. Yet art critics call him a genius.  Explore the story of this self-taught artist – his complex work – and the meaning behind his images in this award-winning Alabama Public Television special.

Building the Dream
Thursday, Feb. 20 at 9:00pm
Building the Dream recounts the journey of an idea for a national monument honoring Martin Luther King Jr. - from a group of friends talking around a kitchen table to the creation of this permanent symbol - to ensure King's Dream will remain alive for future generations. Interviews with Bill Clinton, Colin Powell, Andrew Young, John Lewis, John Warner, Connie Morella, John Sarbanes, King family members and many others tell the story.

One Night in March
Sunday, Feb. 23 at 6:00pm
“One Night in March” tells the story of a historical semi-final basketball game in the 1963 NCAA tournament during which racial barriers were shattered by MSU and its opponent, Loyola. Mississippi State's president, its head basketball coach and their players defied the Mississippi governor and state legislature by playing against an integrated Loyola team.