The GI Bill of Rights

Be Woke Presents Black History in Two Minutes (or so)

From the inception of the United States, Black soldiers have answered the call to serve on the front lines. And in 1944, the US government created the GI Bill, providing benefits and offerings like job training, loans for school and access to mortgages for soldiers who serve their country.

The bill should have changed the landscape for Black soldiers returning home. However, specific wording in the formal piece of legislature combined with the decision to allow states to regulate the program meant Black people were subjected to the same discrimination and exclusionary practices as years prior. While Black people continue to serve in the armed forces, the effects of the discriminatory practices are still felt and seen to this day.

In this episode of Black History In Two Minutes or So hosted by Henry Louis Gates Jr. — with additional commentary from Hasan Jeffries of Ohio State University, Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder in Residence- Policylink, and Lawrence Bobo of Harvard University — we will take a look at a bill that was seen as a major education and social mobility investment for soldiers but instead, it turned out to be the opposite for many Black soldiers.

Black History in Two Minutes (or so) is a 4x Webby Award winning series.

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Archival Materials Courtesy of:
• Alamy Images
• Everett Collection, Inc.
• Getty Images
• Library of Congress

Additional Archival Material Courtesy of:
• Inkwell Films, Kunhardt & WNET

Executive Producers:
• Robert F. Smith
• Henry Louis Gates Jr.
• Dyllan McGee
• Deon Taylor

Senior Producer:
• William Ventura

Series Producers:
• Chinisha Scott
• William Ventura

Executive in Charge of Production:
• Robert L. Yacyshyn

Post Production Supervisor:
• Veronica Leib

Post Production Coordinator:
• Katherine Swiatek

Written By:
• Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Additional Writing:
• Kevin Burke
• Kelsi Lindus
• Chinisha Scott
• William Ventura

• Margaret Metzger
• Anne Yao

• Kevin Burke

Archival Producer:
• Megan Graham

• Zoë Smith

Assistant Editors:
• Patrice Bowman
• Nicholas Mastrangelo

Director of Photography:
• Nikki Bramley
• Nausheen Dadabhoy
• Stephen McCarthy

Graphic Design:
• Anthony Kraus

Special Thanks:
• Daina Ramey Berry
• Sam Hartley
• Elyssa Hess
• Stacey Holman
• Hasan Jeffries
• Peniel Joseph
• Imani Perry

Music By:
• Oovra Music

Be Woke presents is brought to you by Robert F. Smith and Deon Taylor.

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