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A Great and Mighty Walk

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A Great and Mighty Walk

Made in 1996, the film A Great and Mighty Walk is made by author and historian Dr. John Henrik Clarke, who, alternates back and forth between a narrative of his own personal history, and his interpretations on the history of Africa, Pan-Africanism, the flops of the civil rights and the Black Power movement and his analytical appraisal of Louis Farrakhan's Million Man March.

Born in 1915, Dr. John Henrik Clarke was born into a family of sharecroppers that lived in Union Springs, Alabama. Being that he was raised in poverty, like most Black children his age, his early schooling was done in an one room schoolhouse that was sparsely equipped with the materials needed to teach young children. Nonetheless, Clarke still became quite the intellect within his early years and he began to question the meaning of "history" and the fact that his peoples' history was nowhere to be found.

Clarke noticed that although many bible stories "unfolded in Africa...I saw no African people in the printed and illustrated Sunday school lessons," he wrote in 1985. "I began to suspect at this early age that someone had distorted the image of my people. After being told by a white man that he had previously worked for that "Black people had no history", he began to embark upon a decade long research on the dormant history of African Americans and he discovered that not only did it exist but that it had been resolutely veiled by those that called our ancestors their slaves. That search took him to libraries, archives and collections in Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, Latin America and Africa.

What he unearthed was that the past of black people is global; that "the first light of human consciousness and the world's first civilizations were in Africa"; that the so called Dark Ages were gloomy only for Europe and that some African nations at the time were far more superior than any in Europe; that as Africa sends its children to Europe to receive an education because that is where the best universities are, early Greeks once sent their children to Africa to study because that was where the best universities were; and that slavery, although ruinous, was neither the commencement nor the termination of Black people's influence on the world.

Clarke goes on to expound upon the topic of the history of African civilization, and contends that no dominant or colonizing power ever "brought civilization"

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