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Say It Plain: A Century of Great African-American Speeches | [American RadioWorks]

Say It Plain: A Century of Great African-American Speeches

The visceral impact of history's great speechmakers is at the heart of Say It Plain. This new American RadioWorks documentary highlights a selection of landmark sermons, speeches, and broadcasts by remarkable African-American speakers.
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Audible Editor Reviews

This documentary by American Radioworks puts you in the front row of history, listening to famous speeches by African-Americans. In addition to Martin Luther King's famous "I Have a Dream" speech, we hear Booker T. Washington skillfully addressing tense economic issues in the deep south. Comedian Dick Gregory describes his visit and the food in Alabama jails. Voting activist Fannie Lou Hammer reveals the beatings she took for registering black voters in Mississippi. Early feminist Shirley Chisholm courageously addresses the issue of abuse within the black community, while Barbara Jordan and Stokely Carmichael vent their frustration over the fight for their constitutional rights.

American Radioworks insightfully introduces each speech with enlightening context, detailing the different circumstances, challenges, and death threats these speakers were working under. Listening to these stirring voices and imagining the speakers before you is absolutely the next best thing to being there in person. Expect goosebumps and tears.

Publisher's Summary

The visceral impact of history's great speechmakers is at the heart of Say It Plain. This new American RadioWorks documentary highlights a selection of landmark sermons, speeches, and broadcasts by remarkable African-American speakers.

Say It Plain delves into a vibrant tradition of African-American oratory that connects figures as different in style and ideology as Booker T. Washington and Marcus Garvey, Shirley Chisholm and Julian Bond. It's a vivid portrait of black Americans exhorting the nation to make good on its democratic promises.

Producers: Stephen Smith and Kate Ellis
Editor: Catherine Winter
Host: Michele Norris
Coordinating Producer: Sasha Aslanian
Project Manager: Misha Quill
Assistant Producer: Ellen Guettler
Production Assistance: Nathan Hall, Zachary Johnson, Melody Ng, Neil Tassoni, Carey Biron, Bente Birkeland, and Samantha Kennedy.
Web Producer: Ochen Kaylan
Executive Producer: Bill Buzenberg

Click here to listen to more great radio documentaries from American RadioWorks.

©2005 American Public Media

What Members Say

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    Dave Hedley San Mateo, CA United States 02-21-14
    Dave Hedley San Mateo, CA United States 02-21-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Really moving"

    A lovely collection of speeches. I can't listen to Martin Luther King Jr's last speech without weeping. Knowing what's next is so sad after hearing what he has done, and knowing what he wanted to accomplish. I was a child when Barbara Jordan spoke at the House Watergate Hearings and it was something that struck me even as a child and I've treasured her words ever since. Listen to this one. It's well worth it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christian Edinburgh, United Kingdom 06-09-13
    Christian Edinburgh, United Kingdom 06-09-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Good Point: Top class listen. Bad Point: Too short"

    Excellent mix of speeches. Really enjoyed the analysis of the speeches and the background music during the interludes; portraying the era of the speeches. Just wish it was twice as long.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Jonathan
    Exeter, Devon, United Kingdom
    1/13/09
    Overall
    "It's 51 minutes long!"

    I was appalled by the brevity of this audio book.

    The subject is vast and has the potential to be riveting so I was heartbroken by the hop, skip and jump approach they've taken to it. There are so many important speeches by so many important people in the civil rights struggle that I cannot communicate my disappointment at their omission and editing.

    In terms of included content there are some true jewels here with true life snippets of important speeches going back nearly 100 years (why couldn?t we have them in total without interruption?) and harrowing accounts of brutality which are told in some cases with feeling by people unused to public speaking. I love in particular; Martin Luther King's last recorded speech in which he almost apologises to his audience for being murdered before the struggle is over. It's almost as if he KNEW what would happen the very next day. I'm honoured to have heard that speech and urge publishers to give us a longer more detailed audio book researching and presenting the subject properly. At ?13 this is horrendously priced for 51 minutes.

    Having said that I?d happily pay ?50 for a decently presented offering that does the subject some justice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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