American Masters

PBS
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7 videos in this collection

Dorothea Lange
More than four decades of 20th-century America are filtered through Lange's life and lens -- her creations and achievements, her tragedies and losses. Known for her powerful images from the…
Althea Gibson
This is the story of Althea Gibson (1927-2003), a truant from the rough streets of Harlem, who emerged as the unlikely queen of the highly segregated tennis world in the…
Pedro E. Guerrero
The American Masters series and Latino Public Broadcasting's VOCES series join forces for the first time to explore the life and work of photographer Pedro E. Guerrero (September 5, 1917…
Inventing David Geffen
Notoriously press and camera-shy, David Geffen reveals himself for the first time in this unflinching portrait of a complex and compelling man, directed, produced and written by American Masters creator…
Billie Jean King
Billie Jean King is the single most important female athlete of the 20th century, winner of 39 Grand Slam titles and a major force in changing and democratizing the cultural…
Norman Lear
The first documentary about legendary showrunner Norman Lear, who dominated and reshaped television for decades. Largely responsible for the explosion of bold American television in the 1970s, Lear's name is…
Eero Saarinen
Explore the life of Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen, whose visionary buildings include St. Louis' Gateway Arch and the General Motors Technical Center in Michigan. Travel with his son, as he…

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Inventing David Geffen
Part of the Series: American Masters
Notoriously press and camera-shy, David Geffen reveals himself for the first time in this unflinching portrait of a complex and compelling man, directed, produced and written by American Masters creator Susan Lacy. Geffen's far-reaching influence -- as agent and manager, record industry mogul, Hollywood and Broadway producer, and billionaire philanthropist…
The Jewish Americans - A Series by David Grubin
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Henry VIII's Enforcer: The Rise and Fall of Thomas Cromwell
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Thomas Cromwell is one of English history's most fascinating characters and one of the strongest supporters of the English Reformation. At a time when lineage meant everything, this self-taught man, from the backstreets of London, rose from his poor beginnings to become chief minister to King Henry VIII and Earl…
Uncle Chatzkel
Uncle Chatzkel portrays the patient triumph of one man's dignity and intellect over genocide, oppression and personal adversity. Chatzkel Lemchen has lived through the Russian revolution, two world wars, a communist regime and the transition of Lithuania from Soviet republic to an independent state. During the Holocaust his parents and…
Raoul Wallenberg: Between The Lines
Raoul Wallenberg was an unlikely hero. A Swedish diplomat, he risked his life to challenge the Nazi forces in Hungary and to save the lives of as many as 100,000 Jews in Budapest in 1944. The Nazis, led by the notorious Albert Eichmann, had already stripped the Hungarian countryside of…
Billie Jean King - A Female Tennis Champion
Part of the Series: American Masters
Billie Jean King is the single most important female athlete of the 20th century, winner of 39 Grand Slam titles and a major force in changing and democratizing the cultural landscape. AMERICAN MASTERS looks back to the 12-year-old girl who played tennis on public courts, observed disparity and, as she…
Queen Elizabeth
Part of the Series: In Their Own Words
Journey into the six decade reign of one of the world's most influential women. Follow Queen Elizabeth II's remarkable life, from her youth--when few expected she'd ever wear the crown--to her uncle Edward VIII's stunning abdication, and her father's subsequent coronation as King George VI. Witness her experiences during World…
Inside Einstein's Mind
Part of the Series: NOVA
On November 25th, 1915, Einstein published his greatest work: general relativity. The theory transformed our understanding of nature's laws and the entire history of the cosmos, reaching back to the origin of time itself. Now, in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Einstein's achievement, NOVA tells the inside story of…
Muhammad Ali
Part of the Series: In Their Own Words
He changed boxing almost as much as he changed the world. Follow Muhammad Ali's rise from Columbia Gym in Louisville, Kentucky to international fame, as he transcended his great athletic achievements to become one of the most influential Americans of his time. His once-polarizing figure ultimately became a beloved and…
Finding Babel - The Story of Russian Author Isaac Babel
This film follows the grandson of famed Russian-Jewish author Isaac Babel as he searches for answers to better understand the enigmatic man he never met. Babel's writings, considered masterpieces of Russian literature, challenged the reality of life under rising Soviet totalitarianism, leading to his execution as part of Stalin's purges…
Timothy Leary is Dead - LSD Guru Dr. Timothy Leary
Journalizing his final year before dying of cancer in May 1996, this documentary takes a sentimental walk down memory-lane to honor a man whose place in history is surely guaranteed. Probably best known for his oft-quoted (and misunderstood) 1960s phrase wherein Dr.Leary encouraged everyone to "turn on, tune in and…
Augustine: A Voice for all Generations
Augustine of Hippo (354-430) is one of the greatest theologians of the Christian Church. His works, including The City of God, On the Trinity, and Confessions, have had an inestimable impact on the Church and, by extension, on Western Civilization at large. Yet, where did such faith begin? After rejecting…