Review: Beauty in Truth

Alice Walker

Beauty in Truth, a film by Pratibha Parmar, is a documentary about American writer and activist Alice Walker.

Image of Alice Walker from the film Beauty in Truth
Image of Alice Walker from the film Beauty in Truth

Predisposed to love it would be a good description of my attitude toward the film. I’m a lifelong admirer of Alice Walker. I have a tendency to finish her books and turn back to page 1 and start reading again. She’s an extraordinary soul – a beautiful soul – who has given so much to the planet. I respect her, I value her brilliance, I see so much wisdom and spiritual guidance in work. Her life is an inspiration.

Everyone should see Beauty in Truth. Everyone who is cares about American history. Everyone who cares about justice anywhere on the planet. Everyone with an interest in writing and storytelling.

Indeed, my recommendation of the film is enthusiastic and heartfelt.

Pratibha Parmar wrote, directed and produced the film. She first worked with Alice Walker after the release of Possessing the Secret of Joy, Walker’s novel about female genital mutilation. The Beauty in Truth website explains,

1993 Pratibha released her most challenging film Warrior Marks, which documented female genital mutilation at a time when the subject was taboo globally. This award-winning documentary was made in collaboration with the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alice Walker. Parmar and Walker collaborated on the book Warrior Marks – Female Genital Mutilation and the Sexual Blinding of Women, which documented the making of the film.

Beauty in Truth documents Alice Walker’s life from her upbringing in rural Georgia to the present day. It uses interviews, conversations with Alice, quotations from her poems and books, historical video footage, news reports and video and personal images supplied by Alice Walker to create the story of a writer and activist who is known worldwide.

Photo by Virginia DeBolt from Wikimedia Commons http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Alice_Walker.jpg
Alice Walker: Photo by Virginia DeBolt from Wikimedia Commons
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Alice_Walker.jpg

The particularities and struggles of Alice Walker’s life reflect with universal truth on the Civil Rights Movement, on the women’s movement, on the gay rights movement, and movements for justice all around the globe. Her struggles and the reaction of the American people to them are not just a story about her but a story about the American character. Her writing and her activism create change that affects us all.

Alice Walker has been honored as a writer with a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award for The Color Purple as well as numerous other awards and honors for her writing and humanitarianism. This film honors the life she’s lived as a human being with an ability to understand and speak for truth and justice.

The film is available for streaming on PBS if you act soon. A screening schedule is available on the film website, and the film can be booked for showing in schools. (PBS LearningMedia provides four video-based educational components are available for teachers of grades 9-12 to download for free. University level instructors can sign up to be notified when materials for their level are available. Instructions are on the website.)

Other People’s Opinions: A Few Reactions from Twitter

I saw quite a few tweets about the film when it first aired on PBS last week. I thought you might be interested in the reactions of a few other people as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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