2015 marks the centenary of the release of the controversial, yet extremely significant American silent epic, The Birth of a Nation, by D.W. Griffith. Griffith is often considered to be one of the most important figures in the history of cinema having been credited with creating and perfecting cinematic devices such as the flash-back, the iris shot, the mask and cross-cutting. The Birth of a Nation covers a period of several years and is centered on the relationship of two families during the Civil War and Reconstruction-US era. Dividing friends and destroying families, The Civil War is minor in its disruption compared to the anarchy which follows in the black-ruled South post-war. The film was released to great commercial success, being one of the highest grossing films of the Silent era, but was widely-debated and often condemned due to its portrayal of the Ku Klux Klan as a heroic force. The film is attributed to launching the career of Lillian Gish, who worked closely with Griffith for many years, and who was also known as ‘The First Lady of American Cinema’. Extras: Two short films by D W Griffith; The Rose of Kentucky (1911) and The Coward (1911) The Drummer of the 8th (1913) – short film starring future Oscar winning Frank Borzage (A Farewell to Arms) Stolen Glory (1912) – a comedy starring Ford Sterling filmed against the backdrop of a parade of Union Civil War veterans 1930 re-release title sequence and short archival introduction by D W Griffith Photoplay orchestral recording sessions Out-takes and original camera tests D W Griffith on Lux Radio Theatre BFI Southbank roundtable discussion (2015) A Personal Appreciation of Birth of a Nation by film scholar Melvyn Stokes Fully illustrated booklet with news essays and full credits Cast and Crew: Directed by D W Griffith (Intolerance, Orphans of the Storm) Cast: Lillian Gish (Duel in the Sun, The Comedians)
Leanora Sutter, Esther Hirsh, Merlin Van Tornhout and Johnny Reeves are among the unforgettable cast inhabiting a small Vermont town in 1924. It's a town that turns against its own when the Ku Klux Klan moves in. No one is safe, especially the two youngest: 12-year old Leanora, an African-American girl, and six-year old Esther, who is Jewish. (A full-cast recording.) 1. Language: English. Narrator: uncredited. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/lili/001480/bk_lili_001480_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
In a frightening incident, Elsie's husband, Edward Travilla, narrowly survives an accidental shooting when friends tease son Edward, Jr. into firing a loaded pistol. The shot grazes Edward's head, and he survives with only minor damage. Soon life in the Travilla household returns to its calm routine. In the meantime, Elsie welcomes a cousin from Scotland who brings a very special talent with him as well as news of her mother's ancestral family. Elsie and Edward take great delight in their burgeoning family. The aftermath of the Civil War provides them with many opportunities to uphold their heritage and faith in practical ways, but they are caught up in a campaign against a powerful adversary, the Ku Klux Klan, as they fight to protect the innocent from unjust persecution. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Marguerite Gavin. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/blak/001470/bk_blak_001470_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The KKK weren't never about race. It were always about power and greed. So begins 86-year-old Hadley Thompson, who insists a rural historian research why two people were murdered. At first, Hubbell has little interest in the matter. Not only did the murders take place in 1924, there never was a question of who committed them. What difference could a motive make now? It is Thompson's insistence that an active Ku Klux Klan chapter fueled the feud between two blue-eyed, Baptist families that helps change Hubbell's mind. Soon Thompson and Hubbell are an unlikely duo, tramping through field grass, combing through copies of dusty newspapers, and driving down gravel roads to discover what made friends and neighbors turn against each other in post-World War I America. More than just a story of a feud, Blood River Rising whispers a warning for today's increasingly diverse society. 1. Language: English. Narrator: William Lawson Culver, Victoria Hubbell. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/173994/bk_acx0_173994_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
As book two of The Justice Riders series begins, Ezra Justice and his elite group of special operation soldiers have just helped General William T. Sherman put an end to the Civil War and must go their separate ways . . . but not for long. Scattered to the Ku Klux Klan-ridden South (former slave Nathaniel York), a hostile Midwest Sioux reservation (medicine man Harry Whitecloud), and the rugged goldmine towns of California (the notorious Hawkins twins), these pioneering men face plenty of dangers apart from one another.Yet each knows there is something more powerful at work when they journey together. Suddenly, when General Sherman finds himself in need of a post-Civil War team to combat the armed resistances against President Ulysses S. Grant and his efforts to reconstruct America, Justice and company ride again. Chuck Norris and friends deliver another winning tale of unmatched adventure, simple faith, and surprise romance in A Threat to Justice. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Rick Plastina. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/oasi/000336/bk_oasi_000336_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Driven from his home to protect his loved ones from retaliation from the town council of Bandera, Texas, John Crudder becomes a vagabond. As he moves across the state, each place he stops he sees injustice, and so continues his role as the Midnight Marauder. In Huntsville, he finds cruelty worse than anything he has previously seen. And the man responsible escapes justice for murder and lives beyond the reach of the law. Crudder’s stand against such evil is the only way he can get the scales of justice to balance.Crudder becomes aware of the role of a politician in central Texas who brings the Ku Klux Klan to the state and sets out to persuade him to change his ways. Crudder is now a wanted man with a price on his head. Everywhere he goes, he reads the wanted posters about the Midnight Marauder. He wonders if he will forever have to live in the shadows. 1. Language: English. Narrator: R. William James. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/122717/bk_acx0_122717_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
Critically-acclaimed novelist Troy Soos evokes the spirit and strife of 1920s America in this compelling mystery. Hanging Curve portrays a major league baseball player's struggle to see justice triumph over hatred and the expanding threat of the Ku Klux Klan. Mickey Rawlings hasn't had much time at bat since he joined the St. Louis Browns as a utility infielder. When a former teammate offers him the chance to play in a semi-pro game against the East St. Louis Cubs - a well-known black team - he jumps at the chance. The Cubs turn out to be powerful opponents. But the real battle begins later, after the black pitcher is found hanging from the backstop. Baseball historian Troy Soos interviewed surviving members of the Negro National League to create this absorbing tale. His deft blend of authentic sports lore and period details gives fans something to cheer about. Narrator Johnny Heller's lively performance adds spin to every curve ball in the plot. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Johnny Heller. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/reco/002434/bk_reco_002434_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The New York Times best-selling author of The Kennedy Women chronicles the powerful and spellbinding true story of a brutal race-based killing in 1981 and subsequent trials that undid one of the most pernicious organizations in American history - the Ku Klux Klan. On a Friday night in March 1981, Henry Hays and James Knowles scoured the streets of Mobile in their car, hunting for a black man. The young men were members of Klavern 900 of the United Klans of America. They were seeking to retaliate after a largely black jury could not reach a verdict in a trial involving a black man accused of the murder of a white man. The two Klansmen found 19-year-old Michael Donald walking home alone. Hays and Knowles abducted him, beat him, cut his throat, and left his body hanging from a tree branch in a racially mixed residential neighborhood. Arrested, charged, and convicted, Hays was sentenced to death - the first time in more than half a century that the state of Alabama sentenced a white man to death for killing a black man. On behalf of Michael's grieving mother, legendary civil rights lawyer and cofounder of the Southern Poverty Law Center Morris Dees filed a civil suit against the members of the local Klan unit involved and the UKA, the largest Klan organization. Charging them with conspiracy, Dees put the Klan on trial, resulting in a verdict that would level a deadly blow to its organization. Based on numerous interviews and extensive archival research, The Lynching brings to life two dramatic trials, during which the Alabama Klan's motives and philosophy were exposed for the evil they represent. In addition to telling a gripping and consequential story, Laurence Leamer chronicles the KKK and its activities in the second half the 20th century and illuminates its lingering effect on race relations in America today. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Malcolm Hillgartner. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/harp/005253/bk_harp_005253_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
C. P. Ellis grew up in the poor white section of Durham, North Carolina, and as a young man joined the Ku Klux Klan. Ann Atwater, a single mother from the poor black part of town, quit her job as a household domestic to join the civil rights fight. During the 1960s, as the country struggled with the explosive issue of race, Atwater and Ellis met on opposite sides of the public school integration issue. Their encounters were charged with hatred and suspicion. In an amazing set of transformations, however, each of them came to see how the other had been exploited by the South's rigid power structure, and they forged a friendship that flourished against a backdrop of unrelenting bigotry. Rich with details about the rhythms of daily life in the mid-20th-century South, The Best of Enemies offers a vivid portrait of a relationship that defied all odds. By placing this very personal story into broader context, Osha Gray Davidson demonstrates that race is intimately tied to issues of class and that cooperation is possible - even in the most divisive situations - when people begin to listen to one another. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Keith Sellon-Wright. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/blak/010160/bk_blak_010160_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.