N. – The Documentary
“It is absolutely silly and unproductive to have a funeral for the
word nigger when the actions continue. We need to have a movement to
resurrect brothers and sisters, not a funeral for niggers cause
niggers don’t die…” -Nas feat. Last Poets “Project Roach”
The NAACP may have buried the word, but the N word still lives and breathes in the minds of many, especially young black Americans. A word loaded with negative and positive emotions but rooted in pain and struggle, young film maker A.V. Rockwell took on the much debated topic of the N word. Featuring commentary from music industry professionals, artists, scholars and students, this piece explores a wide range of views and experiences of this loaded word and just touches upon the various meanings it can take on.
A.V. was inspired to take on this topic by a desire to spark conversation. As a young Black female growing up in Queens she is not immune to the heavy use of a word that has conflicting meaning. She connects it to the lost history of Black people as a whole, “Are we black people, African-Americans, negroes, colored people,niggers, or niggas? Because of the unique circumstances under which we entered this country, losing our history, I think to an extent we are still struggling to figure out who we are.”
This year seemed to have been a year of self reflection for Black people, with documentaries about Black hair, and even an ABC Nightline segment on Black women and dating, people are looking at themselves and publicly asking why, and how did we end up this way? Rockwell wanted the focus of this piece not to simply be on the word but about empowerment through education, “Whether we’re talking about ‘good hair,’ “nice complexions” or ‘niggas,’ thinking more self-reflectively about the many ways we can improve ourselves will help us reach the unity and empowerment needed
to transcend our past.”
Check out the documentary above and keep your eyes on this rising film maker.