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Reflections Unheard: Black Women in Civil Rights
A film by Nevline Nnaji
US, 2013, 81 minutes, Color, DVD
Order No. W141131
Where do black women activists fit into the epochal struggles for equality and liberation during the 1960s and 70s? This feature-length documentary unearths the story of black women’s political marginalization—between the male-dominated Black Power movement and second wave feminism, which was largely white and middle class—showing how each failed to recognize black women’s overlapping racial and gender identities.

Archival footage and in-depth interviews with former members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), SNCC’s Black Women’s Liberation Committee, the Black Panther Party, Third World Women’s Alliance, and the National Black Women’s Feminist Organization reveal how black women mobilized, fought for recognition, and raised awareness of how sexism and class issues affected women of color within and outside The Black Power Movement and mainstream feminism. Prominently featured activists include Frances Beale, Angela Davis, Kola Boof, Nikki Giovanni, Rosemari Mealy, Judy Richardson, Gwendolyn Simmons, Deborah Singletary, and Eugenia Wiltshire. Required viewing for Women’s Studies, African American Studies, and students of the Civil Rights Movement.


  • New York African Diaspora Film Festival
  • London Feminist Film Festival
  • Pan African Film Festival
  • CinemAfrica Film Festival
  • Black Int’l Cinema Berlin
  • Montreal International Black Film Festival

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    "Nnaji’s film is a compelling and timely portrayal of the discrimination that black feminists endured during the American civil rights struggle…"
    Feminist Perspektiv

    "As many young Black women begin to explore feminist works by noted women of color, this film is a valuable and important narrative that’s been added to the discourse."
    Tiff Jones
    Coffee Rhetoric

    "The ways in which it touches upon the experiences of black women in relation to the masculinist Black Power movement as well as the emerging white middle-class feminist movement, are brilliant and incisive."
    Elaine Castill

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    Reflections Unheard: Black Women in Civil Rights is included in the following Special Collections.
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WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Ending the Silence, BODY IMAGE, and AFRICAN-AMERICAN: Celebrate the Lives of African-American Women.

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us