Roots: The Next Generations
- 1 Season
Created by Alex Haley, Roots: The Next Generations tells the related tales of former slaves building lives for themselves in the New South after the Civil War. Produced by Stan Margulies, it stars James Earl Jones, Irene Cara, and Debbi Morgan. It is 1882, West Tennessee. The movie begins with elderly Chicken George Moore moving in with his family, all of whom are descendants of Kunta Kinte, a man brought from Africa to be a slave and who subsequently sired many children. George's relatives include Tom Harvey, Tom's wife Irene, and their two daughters. Tom is well respected in the local black community and even manages to coexist with the town's leading white patriarch, Col. Frederick Warner, a onetime confederate officer. Despite this seeming peace, considerable tension exists between blacks and whites owing to Jim Crow laws. Chicken George, a former slave, is so called because he once trained his master's fighting cocks. His presence serves as a link between the old and new generations of Kunta Kinte's descendants. Carrie Harden, a young black schoolteacher, is courted by Col. Warner's son, Jim. Meanwhile, Tom pushes to have Carrie hired on as the schoolteacher for the new all black school. Col. Warner disapproves of his only son's interracial dalliance, and urges Tom to close down the all black school. Tom is almost convinced, but when he quarrels with his daughter, Elizabeth, after expressing dislike for her biracial suitor, he has a change of heart. The all black school is kept open and Carrie employed. Jim and Carrie marry, and Col. Warner promptly disowns Jim, though promises to protect them from any racial backlash at the hands of white hooligans. Jim is welcomed into Carrie's church family. Tom and Elizabeth grow apart, though repeatedly try to reconcile. Tom's other daughter courts a pleasant, hardworking boy named Will; they marry. Chicken George dies. The first chapter in the story of Kunta Kinte's progeny comes to a close.