About Us


We’re interested in stories on video that explore the life and culture of the African American experience. If you’ve created a story on video you’d like to see published in the Black Perspectives Now section on the Basic Black broadband site, please send your idea to basic_black@wgbh.org.

Basic Black was created in 1968 during the turmoil of the civil rights movement as a response to the demand for public television programs reflecting the concerns of African Americans. Now, forty years later, in the midst of another historical political shift, the mission of Basic Black remains strong.

The historic 2008 presidential race, the reexamination of racial ideologies, the search for new black leadership, the embrace of a global citizenship, and the continuing search for solutions to pressing concerns demand a fresh examination of the black experience. Basic Black on broadband will reflect that ongoing conversation, across geographic borders and generational lines with the most current stories, interviews, and commentaries.


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  1. I’m writing to present a topical subject I think your readers wowill be able to sink their teeth into. The exciting new book “The Black Church – Where Women Pray and Men Prey” by Deborrah Cooper is based on the shocking 2010 blog post that had CNN, Al Sharpton, Michael Baisden, Michael Eric Dyson, Al Joyner and all of Black America in an uproar: The Black Church: How Black Churches Keep African American Women Single and Lonely! In her new book, Ms. Cooper continues an long needed examination of how religion is misused by unscrupulous preachers, and the games charlatans posing as men of God use to prey on women and children.

    It’s a tough read and not everyone will have the stomach for it. Some women are afraid of what they might find when they pull back the curtain, and thus aren’t willing to question the behavior of the men leading their church. Others fear that Ms. Cooper is attacking God or Jesus, attacking their church or their beloved pastor. There is no need for anyone to be afraid of the truth. Good pastors welcome examination because they know they will pass all scrutiny with flying colors; those that are afraid of scrutiny have much to hide.

    For those women brave enough to take a look at what is going on at their churches, and who are strong enough to demand protection from predatory men for women and children within the walls of the House of God, this book is right on time. And for the black women and children that have personally experienced the travesties of which the author writes, the book validates their reality and gives them a voice with which they can demand change.

    Ms. Cooper is available for interviews over the next 30 days. Please submit your written request on the website below, or by calling 510-863-0320.

    Book Website: http://www.womenpraymenprey.com

  2. When does the show come back on in 2012?

    • Hi Ayo,
      Basic Black returns for its new season October 19.

  3. The real story needs to be told!

  4. I looking for a way to respond to the ‘role model’ issue on the most recent episode of 05-15-2015. Who would be a better ‘role model’: Tom Brady, or Lee Atwater (who once gave an event in honor of Atwater).? JMC Providence

  5. #MeToo and #OscarSoWhite
    Standing on the shoulders of black women

    Black women in America have a very proud history that is often ignored until it’s too late. Since they came here in the bottom of slave ships they have been a constant beacon of hope and endurance. They watched their husband,.sons and brothers be taken away from by slave trade or violent death at the hands of others. They have been raped,,and beaten,their children snatched away from them at birth or shortly afterwards.

    Yet somehow they continue to be a force to be reckoned with. From Sojourner Truth and Harriet Tubman who where abolitionist and worked for the Union Army during the Civil War. Rosa Parks the Mother of the Civil Rights movement and the 4 Little Girls who simply wanted to praise God. Vivian Malone who only wanted a college education. And all the black women (and men) of Alabama who came out in force to prevent a pedophile from attaining a congressional seat. I could list many more in the this great countries history..

    Black women have endured and raised families while their husbands ,sons and brothers where sent to prison during Ronald Reagan’s and Bill Clinton’s war on drugs. Black women are called all manner of vile names and black men have been the origin of many of these names.(Yes I’m talking about you HIP HOP Nation). But they continue to stand head and shoulders above us all. Men have been brainwashed to believe that a strong black women is something to fear rather than praised

    But what I wanted to express is how often these and many other black women are ignored when they sound the alarm about issues that concern them and maybe just maybe concern all women. I’m talking about the #METOO movement that is sweeping the world

    I recently read an article commemorating the first meeting between Tarana Burke
    and April Reign., the two Black women who started the #metoo and #oscarsowhite campaigns respectively .These two women saw or experienced an injustice and started a conversation about their respective movements and the whole world listened. 10 years too late in the case of #METOO.
    Imagine how many women could have been saved the indignity of work place harassment and assault if the alarm sounded back in 2006 by Ms. Burke. had not fell on death ears.. Some took notice and spread it around. But let’s be honest how many of us heard or saw the hash tag before Rose Mcgowan spoke out. How many of us have even bothered to inquire as to what incident prompted her to Tweet what she tweeted. What I am saying is that we should heed the warnings of a strong black woman
    I’m an not discounting the many contributions women of other race or nationalities have made to this country. But as a black man I must give respect where respect is due.


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