PBS Announces Line-Up for 2012 Black History Month Commemoration

PBS announces an expansive slate of programs profiling the rich history, culture and contributions of African-Americans. The programs air as part of PBS’ celebration of Black History Month, February 2012. With new programs that delve into the archives of history, this year’s schedule provides an in-depth look at a variety of historical events from the post-Emancipation era to the rise of the black power movement.

New specials include a story of the UNDERGROUND RAILROAD and, from INDEPENDENT LENS, an intimate look at “Daisy Bates: The First Lady of Little Rock,” a collection of interviews called “Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975″ and a filmmaker’s cross-country campaign in “More Than a Month”. Schedule also features 2012 Sundance Film Festival selection SLAVERY BY ANOTHER NAME and an AMERICAN MASTERS profile of “Cab Calloway”

SLAVERY BY ANOTHER NAME, premiering Monday, February 13, at 9:00 p.m., this new documentary based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Wall Street Journal senior writer Douglas A. Blackmon examines the concept of “neoslavery,” which sentenced African-Americans in the post-Emancipation South to forced labor for violating an array of laws that criminalized their everyday behavior. Award-winning actor Laurence Fishburne narrates the film.

On Friday, February 24, at 9:00 p.m., turn the radio dial back to the 1950s for the tale of a black singer, a white DJ, forbidden love and the birth of rhythm and blues in GREAT PERFORMANCES “Memphis.” The original Broadway cast members of the 2010 Tony Award-winner for Best New Musical reprise their roles in this roof-raising celebration of music.

Find more information and high-resolution images from these programs on PBS PressRoom.