The documentary Agents of Change recognizes the social climate of the 1960’s in America caught between the Civil Rights, Anti-Vietnam War, and Black Power movements. The narrative of the film closely examines the environment surrounding two specific protests at Universities: San Francisco State (1968) and Cornell University (1969). The struggle for a fairly built educational system in America was present in the documentary’s individual stories and social events of the time. The social justice point of view was thoroughly evaluated on a micro level in this documentary, focusing mainly on two events. But as a whole, the documentary summed up the awareness of defective segregation laws by showing the racial conditions on the college campuses. The documentary truly connected to the audience by displaying the contrast of 1960 protest movements to ongoing present day (2013-2016) revolutions nationwide. The film humanizes the protesters and student governments, which led to the audience getting an honest understanding of the causes of the strikes. This documentary strikes upon our political climate today with the ongoing DACA situation and other travel bands forcing foreign cultures out. Ethnic studies, starting with Black Studies programs in the colleges in the film, has made a giant leap from 1960, and can be taught at almost every college/university today. The ample amount of archival footages supported the films activist intentions by demonstrating real life events that sparked controversy in the 1960’s. Overall, the documentary without a doubt helped my understanding of the worries and anxieties of the ethnic communities of the 1960’s movements that will benefit my research on the Anti-Vietnam War efforts on Muhlenberg’s campus.
Minutes 1:26:40 – 1:28:40