Watch The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights
- 54 min
The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights is a documentary film released in 2013, featuring the extraordinary life and work of Whitney M. Young Jr. The film takes a unique look at the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, primarily focusing on Young's contributions to the struggle, which have often been overlooked in more popular accounts of the era.
The documentary is narrated by actress and civil rights activist Alfre Woodard, who provides a powerful and emotional backdrop to the story. The film takes us through Young's life, from his childhood in Kentucky, to his college years at Kentucky State University and eventually to his work as the head of the Urban League. Young's impressive career spanned some of the most turbulent and transformative years in American history, and the filmmakers do an excellent job of contextualizing Young's efforts within the larger social and political landscape of the time.
One of the central themes of the film is Young's unique approach to civil rights activism. Unlike other leaders of the time, Young was a proponent of working within the system, and he saw opportunities for progress even within the most conservative and discriminatory institutions. For example, he worked to promote the hiring of African American executives in major corporations, believing that economic equality would ultimately lead to greater social and political equality.
The Powerbroker also highlights Young's role in the March on Washington, which is often remembered as a primarily grassroots effort led by Martin Luther King Jr. The film rightly points out that Young played an essential behind-the-scenes role in organizing the event, and that his close relationships with business leaders and politicians helped to make the March a success.
Throughout the movie, we see interviews with a range of people who knew and worked with Young, including civil rights activists, politicians, and prominent figures from the business world. These firsthand accounts provide a rich and detailed portrait of a man who was deeply committed to the cause of civil rights, and who used his considerable charm and strategic thinking to bring about change.
The Powerbroker is not just a biography of Whitney Young, but a powerful exploration of the Civil Rights Movement as a whole. The film does an excellent job of showing how different people and organizations worked together, often in unexpected ways, to achieve a common goal. We see how Young's approach to activism, which emphasized diplomacy and compromise, was not always popular with more radical figures in the movement, but was nevertheless crucial to the success of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other key pieces of legislation.
Perhaps most importantly, The Powerbroker reminds us of the vital role that individuals can play in bringing about social change. Young's story is a powerful example of how one person, through determination and perseverance, can make a difference in the world.
Overall, The Powerbroker is an engaging and inspiring film that sheds new light on a pivotal moment in American history. It is a must-see for anyone interested in civil rights, social justice, or the power of the individual to effect change.
The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights is a 2013 documentary with a runtime of 54 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.8.