|Henry Louis Gates||Host|
What made America? What makes us? These two questions are at the heart of the PBS series Faces of America with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Building on the success of his series African American Lives and African American Lives 2, the Harvard scholar again turns to the latest tools of genealogy and genetics to explore the family histories of 12 renowned Americans. Looking beyond the black experience to the wider immigrant experience, Professor Gates unravels the American tapestry, following the threads of his guests' lives back to their earliest origins around the globe. Along the way, the many stories he uncovers -- of displacement and homecoming, of material success and dispossession, of assimilation and discrimination -- illuminate the American experience. Professor Gates' guests include professor and poet Elizabeth Alexander, who composed and read the poem at President Barack Obama's inauguration; chef Mario Batali; comedian Stephen Colbert, novelist Louise Erdrich; journalist Malcolm Gladwell; actress Eva Longoria; musician Yo-Yo Ma; director Mike Nichols; Her Majesty Queen Noor; television host-heart surgeon Dr. Mehmet Oz; actress Meryl Streep; and figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi. Episode descriptions:
Our American Stories - Episode One Explores the dynamic and shifting relationship America had with her new immigrants in the 20th century. World war tore apart families and sundered the fabric of many lives, but America beckoned and millions came. Yet, America was an ambivalent host. At its best, a place of refuge and salvation. At its worst, a country that would imprison two generations of Japanese Americans. Along the way, we'll discover the buoyant American optimism that shaped chance.
Becoming American - Episode Two Explores the many journeys to becoming American that defined the "Century of Immigration" (1820s - 1924) and transformed the United States from a sleepy agrarian country into a booming industrial power. The obstacles, short-cuts, tragedies and successes encountered or created by the guests' ancestors from around the world reveal the complexity of our shared history and identity as Americans.
Making America - Episode Three Tells the story of the peopling of the New World, of how land came to define the settling and identity of America, and of how the guests' ancestors were part of this history.
Know Thyself - Episode Four takes up the search for the guests' ancestries where the historical record leaves off and links their distinctive family histories to the broader history of "the family of man." Combining the documented stories of some of the guests' last known ancestors with DNA evidence, the series travels backward through time to reveal both distant relatives and surprising shared ancestral connections. This episode offers a compelling and thought-provoking meditation on the importance of ancestry, the meaning of family and the role of both in creating identity.
|Henry Louis Gates||Host|
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I wathced this show when it aired on PBS.... i hope it comes back with new episodes... It was Wonderfully isnpiring!