Premise

A Peabody-winning six-part history of black artistic achievement in the U.S., from 19th-century minstrels to 1990s rap and hip-hop. The series examines ways in which the arts have been used by blacks as a means of self-expression and to `declare their humanity' to a once closed-minded nation. Included are comments from writers, dancers, painters, actors, filmmakers, musicians and other artists.