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Rodney King Riots (Los Angeles, California : 1992)

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15 Segments




Walking Into the Heart of the Los Angeles Riots.

Gregory Alan-WIilliams, Emmy Award winning actor, author and playwright. He has written "A Gathering of Heroes, Reflections on Rage and Responsibility," a memoir of the Los Angeles Riots (Academy Chicago Publishers). On April 29, 1992, Alan-WIilliams, an African American, heard that violence had erupted in South Central L.A. and chose to walk into the heart of the riot. He ended up risking his own life to rescue a Japanese American man who was being brutally beaten by some in the angry crowd.


Filming the Aftermath of the Los Angeles Riots.

Documentary filmmaker Jim Chambers, who put together the new film "112th and Central: Through the Eyes of the Children", a documentary about the effects of the Los Angeles riots on the young people who lived through them. The film is put together from interviews of friends and family filmed by the children themselves, including 12 year old Cleophas Jackson whom Marty also interviews. (Interview by Marty Moss-Coane)


Anna Deavere Smith Discusses "Twilight."

Actress and Stanford Theater Professor, Anna Deavere Smith. She performs solo, multi-casted pieces, the scripts of which are transcripts of interviews with real participants of events. "Fires in the Mirrors" (aired on PBS) gave voice to the many facets of the Crown Heights riots.


After the Rodney King Riots, a Change of Leadership for the LAPD

Former Police Commissioner of Philadelphia Willie Williams replaced the controversial Los Angeles Police Department chief Daryl Gates. Williams' challenge has been to improve the relationship between the police and the community, and to build-up morale within the force. Williams has also had to prepare the department for possible further disturbances in the community, in light of the April riots over the Rodney King verdict.


Journalist Ruben Martinez on Becoming the Other

Martinez was born of Mexican-Salvadoran parents and raised in Los Angeles. His new book, "The Other Side," is a collection of reports, interviews, diary entries, photographs and poems that reflect living on the border between the "first world" of Los Angeles and the "third world" of El Salvador. He speaks with guerrillas in exile, earthquake survivors, war orphans and linerationist priests, which he juxtaposes with accounts of racial tension in the schools, Latino Graffiti art, and hip hop.


Violence vs Force.

Linguist Geoffrey Nunberg considers the difference between the words "force" and "violence."


Black-Korean Conflicts in Los Angeles.

John Lee is a first-generation Korean reporter whose beat at the Los Angeles Times has been Koreatown during and since the riots. Many Korean merchants were targeted, and many wielded guns to defend themselves. He feels that the Korean side of the conflict hasn't been accurately portrayed by the media.


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