“The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central” by Christine Pelisek details the investigation that led to the arrest of Lonnie Franklin, a serial killer dubbed the Grim Sleeper. At the time, South Central was a neighborhood that grappled with low incomes, employment instability, drug addiction, and the crime that often accompanies those social issues. Deaths did not receive the same level of attention or scrutiny as they might have in other communities. For decades Franklin took advantage of that neglect as he prowled South Central Los Angeles attacking and murdering Black women with seeming impunity.
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If you’re interested in learning about the winner of the 1979 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences and creator of “The Lewis Model”, then my Sir W. Arthur Lewis Black History Facts profile is for you.
“Who We Are: A chronicle of Racism in America” is a documentary by Jeffrey Robinson, an attorney and ACLU representative, that discusses the history of racism. And not just individual racism, which is what the focus tends to be placed on, but rather the history of institutional racism. The systemized structure and practice of white supremacy that was created at the founding of the country. I love documentaries (and books) like this where people use facts and logic to break down the ridiculous efforts to reframe history to suit agendas. It’s especially important as pushes are made to eliminate Black history and the reality of American history from school curriculums. To experience Robinson point by point, just completely picking apart and obliterating all this nonsense that you see out here about Black history was incredibly refreshing.
If you’re interested in learning about the first Black woman from any country to win an Olympic Gold Medal and the first Black female athlete with an endorsement deal, then my Alice Coachman Black History Facts profile is for you.
“The Revisioners” by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton tells the story of two Black women dealing with racial tension during different time periods. Josephine’s story jumps back and forth between her enslavement as a child and being a free woman with grown children in the post Civil War years. As an adult, Jospehine married a man with whom she was able to acquire some property and achieve financial independence though it later sparks jealousy in White neighbors who are less fortunate. Ava is a biracial woman raising her son as a single mother in present-day New Orleans. She’s experienced some setbacks and in hopes of improving her financial situation to offer her son a better life, Ava agrees to move in with her White grandmother. While loving at times, her grandmother is a study in microaggressions and has episodes that hint at the prejudiced views she held and could more openly express in her younger years.