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Ava Duvernay: Documentary Analysis

Decent Essays
Documentary Review #2
13th is a 2016 American documentary by director Ava DuVernay. The film talks about how the crossing point of race, equity, and mass incarceration in the United States. It’s titled origins from the 13th Amendment in the United States Constitution, which freed slaves, and prohibited slavery, that is unless as punishment for a crime. The film opens with Barack Obama saying that the US has 5% of the world’s population, but holds 25% of the world’s prisoners. In the documentary DuVernay argues that the practice of slavery has been disseminated end after the American Civil War through such actions like criminalizing behavior and empowering police to arrest poor freedman and force them to work for the state under convict leasing; suppression of African Americans by disenfranchisement, lynchings, and Jim Crow; Politicians announcing a war on drugs that weigh more intensely on minority communities and, by the late 20th century, mass imprisonment of individuals of color in the United States. She analyzes the prison-industrial complex and the now emerging detention-industrial complex, illustrating how much cash is being made
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Watching it made everything about the inequality that we as a people face even more real. It creates a question of are we free, or just freer, then we were? “13th” covers a lot of ground, and gives light to something that people just aren’t talking about. One of the speakers in the movie made an excellent point when they spoke about how it’s so easy to send people to prison. They talk about how most of society has never been behind bars, so cognitively and emotionally, they feel detached. However, that detachment that we hold has a society is why corporations can make laws for us, without us noticing, and people are able to be repressed and shunned by slapping the word criminal on
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