New on BrainPOP

Fannie Lou Hamer

Posted by jglassman on

Most BrainPOP movies start with a letter from a kid. But every once in a while, when just the right grown-up gets in touch, we’re willing to give them an ear, too.

That’s what happened when we got an email asking us to devote a movie to Fannie Lou Hamer, a descendant of enslaved people who became one of the most persuasive voices in the voting rights battle of the 1960s. The request came from a team of historians, documentarians, and Mississippi educators—all experts in Hamer’s life and work—who had also partnered with Hamer’s nieces. They were creating a new educational site to celebrate this powerful, outspoken woman, and they thought a BrainPOP movie would be a valuable addition.

For us, it was an opportunity to explore an overlooked chapter in the Civil Rights story, working with experts who know the topic inside out. Through Hamer’s story, we thought we could touch on important and inspiring American themes. Hamer was a unique talent, but she was also nurtured and taught by her community: from the grandmother born into slavery who helped shape her view of true freedom, to the black church that fed both her love of words and, later, her activism. Her story also demonstrates the long, hard and often brutal slog that was the battle for civil and voting rights. The sheer amount of daily work and daily bravery necessary will always be awe-inspiring.

The result of months of collaboration, our new movie, “Fannie Lou Hamer,” is available today both on BrainPOP and Find Your Voice: The Online Resource for Fannie Lou Hamer Studies.