The New Black boldy examines the controversial and challenging issues the African-American community is grappling with the gay rights issue in light of the recent gay marriage movement and the fight over civil rights. The film documents activists, families and clergy on both sides of the campaign to legalize gay marriage and examines homophobia in the black community's institutional pillar--the black church and reveals the Christian right wing's strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda.
The documentary makes a compelling case that the fight for LGBT rights in Black communities is an extension of the Black Freedom Struggle. It takes viewers into the pews and onto the streets and provides a seat at the kitchen table as it tells the story of the historic fight to win marriage equality in Maryland and charts the evolution of this divisive issue within the black community.
Director Yoruba Richen was inspired to make the film in response to erroneous reports that African American voters caused the passage of an anti-same sex marriage initiative in the 2008 California election. The film looks at other pro and anti-gay rights campaigns over the years and how right-wing groups have used the issue to make inroads in to black communities. It culminates in the 2012 electoral efforts to preserve - or reverse - marriage equality in Maryland, a state with a substantial African American population.
"Inspiring... The film is audacious in its personal biopics of issues facing Black LGBT communities, riveting in its story-telling, and powerful in its political authenticity. From a social and political science perspective, it introduces viewers to the complex confluence of factors that impact the marriage equality debate, including demographics, styles and tactics of issue-based political campaigning and grassroots organizing, as well as high profile activism on behalf of LGBT rights in communities of color. The documentary will be particularly attractive to academics, university administrators, and staff personnel. "A must-see for everyone."- Ravi K. Perry, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Mississippi State University
"Far from 'airing dirty laundry', The New Black brings varying viewpoints together in honest and respectful dialogue. It challenges and expands our ideas about blackness and black struggle in 21st century America. An invaluable teaching tool with which to engage students in difficult conversations about race, sexuality, religion and politics." - Leigh Raiford, African American Studies, University of California, Berkeley
If you are a student or a professor:Watch now
If you are a librarian or a professor: