Details

Biography
Topics
African Americans
Art & Politics
Civil Rights Movement
Film & Video
Media
Multiculturalism
Racism/Racial Justice
Storytelling
U.S. History
White Privilege

ABOUT THE FILM
In this powerful documentary, director Frances Causey investigates the roots of our current racial conflicts. A daughter of the South, raised with a romanticized vision of America’s past, Causey is haunted by slavery’s legacy. She passionately seeks the hidden truth and the untold stories that reveal how the sins of yesterday feed modern prejudice, which burns undiminished despite our seeming progress.

From the moment of America’s birth, slavery was embedded in institutions, laws, and the economy, and yet even as slavery ended, racism survived like “an infection.” By telling individual stories—of free blacks in Canada; of a modern, racially motivated shooting—Causey movingly personalizes the costs and the stakes of continued inaction. “The past is never dead,” William Faulkner once said, and this echoes one scholar’s warning: “We’re still fighting the Civil War, and the South is winning.”

 

ABOUT CHRIS CRASS, THE FACILITATOR OF POST-SCREENING DISCUSSIONS
Chris Crass is a powerful educator on the themes of coming together for racial justice, why anti-racism is vital for white people, lessons from past justice movements, and how a vision of collective liberation can move us into effective action. He is the author of two books, Towards the "Other America:" Anti-Racist Resources for White People Taking Action for Black Lives Matter, and Towards Collective Liberation: Anti-Racist Organizing, Feminist Praxis, and Movement Building Strategy. Both draw from his over 25 years as one o the leading voices in white communities for racial justice. Chris is also available for lectures and workshops in conjunction with a screening of The Long Shadow. Learn more about Chris here.

 

ABOUT FRANCES CAUSEY, THE FILMMAKER
Producer, director, and writer Frances Causey is an award-winning journalist and documentary filmmaker who began her career at CNN where she was a Senior Producer for fourteen years. She has produced several feature length documentaries including Heist: Who Stole the American Dream? In The Long Shadow, Causey, a daughter of the South, explores the reasons behind the continuing racial divisions in the United States, discovering that the politics and impact of slavery didn’t end with the Civil War. Artifacts of slavery — racist laws, policies, and politics — have and continue to negatively impact African Americans while amplifying and extending the power and privilege of being white in America. Slavery has and continues to cast a long shadow on America’s democracy.

 

 

Testimonials

“The Long Shadow is a moving personal and informative history of anti-Black racism in the US packed with revealing details and analysis and leading us towards understanding, healing, and commitment to work for racial justice. A must see for white people concerned about racial equity and social justice.
— Paul Kivel, Anti-Racism Educator, Author, and Co-founder, Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ)

“In this compelling documentary…filmmaker Frances Causey revisits her Southern heritage to explore the evolution of slavery and expose the racism that festers today. Shadow is a gripping personalized history lesson, with Causey covering salient points, including how economics drove the despicable trading of humans. Her of-the-moment feature couldn’t be more necessary.”
— Randy Myers, Mercury News

“A thoughtful reflection on our country’s legacy of slavery.”
Casey Cantrell, Diablo Magazine

“The Long Shadow: Berkeley director Frances Causey digs deep into the roots of slavery and racism in this informative, powerful documentary.”
— David Lewis, San Francisco Chronicle

“This African American history lesson covers a lot – from the early colonies to the 21st century – in 87 minutes. It comes from an interesting point of view: Director Frances Causey is a white descendant of slave owners who had to learn on her own to reject the myth of the Lost Cause. Although conventionally made, this documentary makes a strong argument that black Americans have been and still are intentionally pushed down by the system. The problem, of course, is that the people who need to see this film will never see it – and if they did, they’d reject it.”
— Lincoln Spector, Bayflicks
    

“Ripping a story from her family history that could be splattered on today’s front pages is Frances Causey’s The Long Shadow, which tells a tale about her slave-owning ancestors. ‘My family’s personal connection to slavery made me part of the story,’ she says. ‘(One of my uncles) was a ‘founding father’ and the revolutionary governor of Virginia and was responsible in large part for codifying slavery into American law.’”
— Mal Karman, Pacific Sun

“Causey is haunted by slavery’s legacy. She passionately seeks the hidden truth and the untold stories.
Eat Drink Films

Speeches

The program features the screening of The Long Shadow (run time 84 minutes) followed by a discussion/Q & A facilitated racial justice educator and aurhor, Chris Crass. A 25-page curriculum is also available to be used in conjunction with screenings.

Chris is also available, if logistics allow, for keynotes and interactive workshops. Some of his speech topics include:

For Multiracial Democracy: An Introduction to Race, Racism, White Privilege and Racial Justice
Conversations about race and racism are in the news, in communities and classrooms around the country, whether it's about the presidency, neo-nazi violence in Charlottesville, Black Lives Matter, immigration, Islamophobia, or affirmative action. But what is race and what is racism? What is white privilege and why are these conversations critical for everyone to be having? This highly interactive presentation draws out questions and reflections from participants while also looking at the historical development of race and racism in the United States. More then just raising awareness, this is a session to help make sense of the most pressing issues of our time, help us live the values of equality and justice for all in our daily lives, and strengthen democracy in our society. 

Being An Ally for Social Justice
While awareness of power, privilege and oppression is growing on campuses and in many of our communities, the question “what can I do” persists. Using stories from his own experience as a white person coming into consciousness about racism and as a man coming into awareness of sexism, Chris takes people on a journey that many can relate to, yet few speak openly about. Sharing openly and honestly, with humor and humility, about the often painful experience of becoming aware of one’s privilege, and the awkward confusion of trying to figure out what to do, Chris invites participants to explore their own journey and helps them develop frameworks and practical next steps to become allies. For Chris, the work of an ally isn’t just to work to end the injustices impacting others, but to work against supremacy systems that pit us against each other, suffocate our full humanity, and undermine democracy and economic justice for all.

Visit Chris' page to see more of the programs he can offer in conjunction with screenings.

 

 

Media
Trailer for "The Long Shadow"