Black Journal
Episode Number
Producing Organization
WNET (Television station : New York, N.Y.)
Contributing Organization
Library of Congress (Washington, District of Columbia)
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Episode Description
Discussing whether blacks can receive true justice in American courts, prisons, or in post-prison life, this special Black Journal episode examines America's judicial system from a black perspective. Entitled, "Justice?" the presentation will include five segments: 1. The Courts: Legal experts examine the difficulties blacks face in American courts - the virtual impossibility of receiving trial by pears; the system's tremendous backlog of cases; lack of money for competent legal assistance; and pressures to accept lesser pleas, among other problems. 2. Prison: In exclusive interviews conducted within the San Quentin and Soledad Prison in California, prisoners talk candidly about their lives in prison - the dehumanizing conditions and racial pressures; their reasons for being there - often poverty or lack of competent legal assistance; prison's failure to rehabilitate and adequately prepare prisoners for post-prison life; and the problem they face upon release which virtually ensure failure to establish normal, productive lives. 3. Angela Davis: At UCLA, where Angela Davis was ousted as a philosophy instructor, her lawyer, friends and professional associates discuss the events which led to her arrest and her current trial. Miss Davis is charged with murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy to smuggle weapons into the San Rafael (California) Courthouse last August 7 in an alleged attempt to free three black prisoners. The prisoners, known as the Soledad Brothers, were indicted for allegedly killing a prison guard. Miss Davis, now held incommunicado in the Marin County jail in California, appears in film segments made while she was at UCLA. 4. The Jackson Family: Mrs. Lester Jackson, mother of George Jackson, one of the Soledad Brothers and of Jonathan Jackson, who was killed in the alleged prisoner escape attempt, is interviewed along with other relatives, friends, and members of the Soledad Brothers Defense Committee. 5. Soledad Brothers: Lawyers defending the three Soledad Brothers - George Jackson, Fiesta Durango and John Clutchette - discusses the murder charge and tell why they consider the Soledad Brothers to be "political prisoners." The crime allegedly occurred following a fight in the prison which resulted in the fatal shooting of three black inmates by a prison guard. "Black Journal," a production of NET Division, Educational Broadcasting Corporation (Description adapted from documents in the NET Microfiche)
Series Description
Black Journal began as a monthly series produced for, about, and - to a large extent - by black Americans, which used the magazine format to report on relevant issues to black Americans. Starting with the October 5, 1971 broadcast, the show switched to a half-hour weekly format that focused on one issue per week, with a brief segment on black news called "Grapevine." Beginning in 1973, the series changed back into a hour long show and experimented with various formats, including a call-in portion. From its initial broadcast on June 12, 1968 through November 7, 1972, Black Journal was produced under the National Educational Television name. Starting on November 14, 1972, the series was produced solely by WNET/13. Only the episodes produced under the NET name are included in the NET Collection. For the first part of Black Journal, episodes are numbered sequential spanning broadcast seasons. After the 1971-72 season, which ended with episode #68, the series started using season specific episode numbers, beginning with #301. The 1972-73 season spans #301 - 332, and then the 1973-74 season starts with #401. This new numbering pattern continues through the end of the series.
Broadcast Date
Asset type
Race and Ethnicity
Media type
Moving Image
Embed Code
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Executive Producer: Brown, Tony
Producing Organization: WNET (Television station : New York, N.Y.)
AAPB Contributor Holdings
Library of Congress
Identifier: 1833109-1 (MAVIS Item ID)
Format: 2 inch videotape
Generation: Master
Color: Color
Duration: 0:58:49
Library of Congress
Identifier: 1833109-2 (MAVIS Item ID)
Format: Digital Betacam
Generation: Copy: Access
Color: Color
Duration: 0:59:09
Library of Congress
Identifier: 1833109-4 (MAVIS Item ID)
Generation: Copy: Access
Color: Color
Library of Congress
Identifier: 1833109-5 (MAVIS Item ID)
Generation: Copy: Access
Color: Color
Library of Congress
Identifier: 1833109-3 (MAVIS Item ID)
Generation: Master
Color: Color
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Chicago: “Black Journal; 32; Justice?,” 1971-04-26, Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed May 27, 2024,
MLA: “Black Journal; 32; Justice?.” 1971-04-26. Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. May 27, 2024. <>.
APA: Black Journal; 32; Justice?. Boston, MA: Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from