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“I am the son of a Black man from Kenya and a white woman from Kansas. I was raised with the help of a white grandfather who survived the Depression to serve in Patton’s army during World War II, and a white grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line at Fort Leavenworth while he was overseas.... And for as long as I live, I will never forget that in no other country on earth is my story even possible.”

- Barack Obama

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Obama: In Pursuit Of A More Perfect Union (2021) - 3-Part Documentary Feature - Learning - Life Stories

Screening Guide

Barack Obama’s extraordinary life raises many vital issues for discussion and engagement. Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Untion covers distinct periods of Obama’s personal and professional life and are situated against the backdrop of the country’s racial history. The Screening Guide created for classrooms and community screenings includes background information, guidance for hosting in-person and virtual events, discussion questions, and tools for audiences to discover and use as they participate in the civic life of their communities.

The guide explores:

*Obama’s personal journey leading up to his political career.

*The role of race in American politics.

*Obama’s leadership qualities.

*The ways Obama engaged in civic and political life.

*The challenges and opportunities of creating a more perfect union.

*Obama’s evolving legacy.

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Six lessons use film clips, thematic interview threads, and primary source documents to navigate questions of Obama’s identity, race, and leadership. Students will practice historical and critical thinking and consider the ongoing work of democracy.

We recommend reading the Introduction first as you plan for implementation of the lessons.

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38 full-length interviews from writers, historians, critics, and friends collected in the production of the 3-part documentary share their perspective of the first Black presidency.

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