FEMINIST FRIDAY: Documentaries About The Women Of Color Leading Movements That Are Changing America

‘Not Done: Women Remaking America’ | PBS

Welcome to another edition of Feminist Friday!

It’s clear we are headed for change, not just in America but across the world. With 2020 being a pivotal year due to COVID and all the societal inequalities it unearthed, racial injustice erupting globally after the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, and of course the US presidential election, there is a lot of work to be done.

When it comes to the frontlines of the battles against systemic racism, climate change, gun violence, police brutality, sexual assault and more, you will often find women, especially women of color, leading the fight. This is definitely true in the US, as well as other countries, as you will see in the documentary trailers we are sharing today.

First up is “Not Done: Women Remaking America”, a documentary on PBS from Makers Women taking a look at the biggest and most impactful movements that have changed this country over the last decade. Featuring #BlackLivesMatter founders Patrisse Cullors-Brignac, Opal Tometi and Alicia Garza, #MeToo founder Tarana Burke, one of the #NoDAPL climate justice activist youth leaders Tokata Iron Eyes, and the Women’s March founders Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory, we get a glimpse into how these women are bringing their lived experiences and putting everything on the line in the name of justice. It is powerful and essential viewing right now, and more than anything it gives us hope for the future.

The second documentary is called ‘Us Kids’, from director/producer Kim A. Snyder who featured a generation of youth leaders activated into taking action against gun violence following the Parkland mass shooting in 2018. ‘Us Kids’ chronicles the March For Our Lives movement over the course of several years, following Emma Gonzalez, its co-founders, survivors and a group of teenage activists as they pull off the largest youth protest in American history and set out across the country and globally to build an inclusive and unprecedented youth movement that addresses racial justice, a growing public health crisis and shocking a political system into change.

“The March For Our Lives in Washington, DC, drew over 800,000 people and inspired sister marches on every continent. What began with students from Parkland, Florida, ultimately brought together young leaders and concerned Americans from all over the country. The March For Our Lives marked a turning point in America’s conversation on guns,” writes Katie Peters for the Giffords org.

As a result, numerous gun safety laws have been passed on the state level across America, and a record number of young people have registered to vote after being inspired by seeing their peers take to the streets demanding change and safety for their future.

Keep an eye on the ‘Us Kids’ website for screenings, and eventual VOD announcement.

The final documentary we want to showcase today is ‘A Thousand Cuts’, a film produced, written and directed by Ramona S. Diaz, from PBS Distribution and FRONTLINE. It follows celebrated journalist Maria Ressa as she speaks truth to power and defends democracy against disinformation, the rise of authoritarianism, and an increasingly dangerous virtual world. Nowhere is the worldwide erosion of democracy, fueled by social media disinformation campaigns, more starkly evident than in the authoritarian regime of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. Journalist Maria Ressa places the tools of the free press—and her freedom—on the line in defense of truth and democracy.

It is a kind of David v Goliath narrative, and a testament to the power of women who refuse to back down in the face of corruption. Maria Ressa is a true hero. Watch the trailer below, and screen the full film by clicking here.