Programs to watch this Black History Month on KERA TV
Black history is American history! Join us in celebrating Black History Month 2024 with programming that captures the essence of the African American experience.
▸ Most of the videos below are free to stream, but some full episodes require the Passport member benefit. You can learn more about that right here at kera.org/passport.
▸ Jump over to the KERA on-demand portal any time to explore more to watch.
▸ Some of the programs below are airing on KERA TV this month, too! ⬇️
X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X | Great Performances
▸ Sunday, February 4 at 12 p.m. on KERA TV
Experience Anthony Davis’s groundbreaking opera directed by Tony nominee Robert O’Hara and starring Will Liverman. This new staging portrays Malcolm as an Everyman whose story transcends time and space.
How it Feels to be Free | American Masters
▸ Tuesday, February 6 at 8 p.m.
A documentary that tells the inspiring story of how six iconic African American women entertainers – Lena Horne, Abbey Lincoln, Nina Simone, Diahann Carroll, Cicely Tyson and Pam Grier – challenged an entertainment industry deeply complicit in perpetuating racist stereotypes, and transformed themselves and their audiences in the process.
▸ Tuesday, February 6 at 10 p.m.
This program explores the Black elite and intellectual society at the turn of the 20th century, a class rarely presented. It examines the heated debate and conflict between W.E.B DuBois and William Monroe Trotter with Booker T. Washington on how to best uplift the race and secure equality for their community.
▸ Wednesday, February 7, at 10 p.m. & 11 p.m.
▸ Wednesday, February 14 at 10 p.m. & 11 p.m.
This four-part series hosted by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., chronicles the vast social networks and organizations created by and for Black people—beyond the reach of the “White gaze.” Professor Gates sits with noted scholars, politicians, cultural leaders and old friends to discuss this world behind the color line and what it looks like today.
▸ Friday, February 9 at 8 p.m.
This musical celebration that honors the legacy and influence of Gospel music in America. Contemporary secular artists and renowned gospel singers perform their favorite gospel classics. The event, co-hosted by Gates and Erica Campbell, and featuring John Legend, is a companion program to the PBS four-hour documentary series GOSPEL.
▸ Sunday, February 11 at 5 p.m.
Established by Congress, the 14th Amendment promised citizenship in exchange for enlistment, prompting many African American men. They were denied due to Jim Crow laws but still served. The film examines the profound and often-contradictory roles played by Buffalo Soldiers in U.S. history, and how they fought on two sets of front lines: military conflicts abroad and civil rights struggles at home.
▸ Monday, February 12 at 8 p.m.
▸ Tuesday, February 13 at 8 p.m.
▸ Repeats Tuesday, February 27 at 7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m.
This two-part documentary series digs deep into the origin story of Black gospel music, coming out of slavery, blending with the blues tradition, and soaring to new heights during the Great Migration. From Mahalia to Kirk Franklin, in the last century, gospel music has become the dominant form of African American religious expression and provided a soundtrack of healing and uplift to those at the front lines of protest and change.
▸ Friday, February 16, at 9:30 p.m.
In 1936, a formative event in U.S. history occurred in a corner of Fair Park in Dallas. The Texas Centennial World’s Fair hosted a revolutionary, nationally-funded exhibit that placed front and center the achievements of Black artists. And unsung civil rights leaders like A. Maceo Smith, Eugene K. Jones and Jesse O. Thomas would meet during the Hall’s run to strategize in the fight for voting rights.
For the first time, Black Americans defined their own image in a public arena. Then — the Centennial Exposition Committee had the hall destroyed.
▸ Sunday, February 18, at 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.
An intimate four-hour documentary series from Henry Louis Gates, Jr., The Black Church explores the 400-year-old story of the black church in America, the changing nature of worship spaces, and the men and women who shepherded them from the pulpit, the choir loft, and church pews. Be sure to check out the series’ collection of free-to-watch clips and extras, too.
Chuck D of Public Enemy explores Hip Hop’s political awakening over the last 50 years. With a host of rap stars and cultural commentators he tracks Hip Hop’s socially conscious roots. From The Message to Fight The Power 2020, he examines how Hip Hop has become “the Black CNN.”
This three-part animated series of short videos tied to the Black Church docuseries looks at just a few pivotal people who brought the reality of the right to gather, read, sing, worship and share these truths that should have always been self-evident.
The six-episode Eyes on the Prize tells the definitive story of the civil rights era from the point of view of the ordinary men and women whose extraordinary actions launched a movement that changed the fabric of American life, and embodied a struggle whose reverberations continue to be felt today. Narrated by political leader and civil rights activist Julian Bond (1940-2015).
Go beyond the legend and meet the inspiring woman who repeatedly risked her own life and freedom to liberate others from slavery. Born 200 years ago in Maryland, Harriet Tubman was a conductor of the Underground Railroad, a Civil War scout, nurse and spy, and one of the greatest freedom fighters in our nation’s history.
Lou Gossett, Jr. honors Maya Angelou’s storytelling impact | American Masters
Lou Gossett, Jr. sat down for a conversation in 2014 about Dr. Maya Angelou’s role as a “matriarch” in the lineage of Black storytellers. Interview conducted by directors Rita Coburn and Bob Hercules for “Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise.”
Star Chasers of Senegal | NOVA
A NASA spacecraft named Lucy blasts off from Cape Canaveral on a mission to the Trojans, a group of asteroids over 400 million miles from Earth thought to hold important clues about the origins of our solar system. Just hours before, in Senegal, West Africa, a team of scientists sets out to capture extraordinarily precise observations vital to the success of the Lucy mission.
This documentary examines the life of civil rights legend Fannie Lou Hamer, offering first-hand accounts by those who knew her and worked side by side with her in the struggle for voting rights.
This KERA documentary explores the social and musical context surrounding the South Dallas Pop Festival, held in June of 1970 at the height of the youth-oriented pop festival craze. Dallas musicians Wendell Sneed and Roger Boykin recall their efforts to showcase the best African-American funk bands in Dallas at the time. Produced and directed by Rob Tranchin.
Learn about the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre and how the community of Tulsa is coming to terms with its past, present and future.
Radio note! On Fridays in February at 9 p.m. on KERA News 90.1 FM, you can hear episodes from the audio documentary Gospel Roots of Rock and Soul hosted by CeCe Winans. You can also listen Saturdays in February at 9 a.m. on KXT 91.7 FM, or stream it at kxt.org.
▸ Explore the journey and contributions of Black Americans with these documentaries and episodes curated by PBS and KERA.
▸ Stay informed on race in current events with KERA News coverage
▸ For teachers and parents — access KERA’s education resource toolkit on protests, race and African American history
▸ PBS also has a collection of resources to help parents discuss race and racism with children
▸ Listen to KERA Think podcasts about race and identity
▸ Read about KERA’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion