Race / Multicultural


1:49:56ENDGAME: AIDS in Black AmericaJul. 10, 2012
53:38Lost in DetentionOct. 18, 2011
36:34The Man Behind the MosqueSep. 27, 2011
56:30The Old Man and the StormJan. 6, 2009
56:07On Our WatchNov. 20, 2007
54:31The StormNov. 22, 2005


As Senate Debates, Immigration Backlog Keeps Growing

The number of deportation cases is the highest it’s been in 15 years.

Immigration Bill Prioritizes Border Security

But the U.S. has already spent billions — and according to a recent GAO report, we don’t know whether it’s making a difference.

Why ICE Released Those 2,000 Immigrant Detainees

It was due to budget reasons, Director John Morton told Congress today.

Senators Unveil Bipartisan Blueprint for Immigration Reform

Their plan includes a path to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants in the country, “contingent” upon success in securing borders.

DHS to Adopt New Rules on Immigration Detention Abuse

Immigrants detained in facilities run by the Homeland Security department are a step closer to having the same protections from abuse as other inmates in the U.S., nearly a year after a government investigation found troubling allegations of sexual abuse in some facilities.

What’s Changed for Immigrants in Detention?

After abuses were uncovered, the Obama administration called for an overhaul of the immigrant detention system. But how much has changed?

New U.S. Immigration Policy Could Prevent Thousands of Deportations

Under a new policy announced today by the Department of Homeland Security, up to 800,000 illegal immigrants will be allowed … Continue reading

Few Immigrants See Relief from Deportations In Obama Administration Review

The news comes as Obama is courting Latino voters in his re-election bid.

New Prison Rape Rules Don’t Yet Cover Immigrant Detention Sites

The Justice Department released new rules yesterday designed to curb sexual abuse in federal and state detention facilities, including stricter … Continue reading

New Immigration Detention Center Aims for a Less Prison-Like Feel

As part of their promise to overhaul the nation’s vast network of immigration detention centers, Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE] … Continue reading

Is Immigration Program Hampering Investigation into School Abuse Scandal?

At least two families of students at Miramonte Elementary School in Los Angeles — where in recent weeks two teachers … Continue reading

Is California the Next Secure Communities Battleground?

We’ve reported on the attempts by three states – New York, Illinois and Massachusetts — to challenge the Obama administration’s … Continue reading

GAO to Investigate Sexual Abuse at Immigration Detention Centers

The move comes after members of Congress petitioned the office to act, citing FRONTLINE’s “Lost in Detention.”

Obama Administration Recommends Halting More than 1,600 Pending Deportations

Back in August, the Obama administration announced it would begin reviewing 300,000 backlogged immigration cases in order to better identify … Continue reading

Members of Congress Urge Investigation into Sexual Abuse in Immigrant Detention Centers

Citing our October film Lost in Detention, 30 members of Congress are pressing the Government Accountability Office to look into … Continue reading

Controversial “Secure Communities” Immigration Program Will Be Mandatory by 2013

By 2013, states will have little choice but to comply with the Obama administration’s controversial Secure Communities immigration program, which collects … Continue reading

DHS to Begin Review of Deportation Cases

Today, the Department of Homeland Security [DHS] is poised to begin streamlining its much-criticized deportation process, accelerating the court docket … Continue reading

Report: Deportation Efforts Still Broad, Uneven

In June, Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE] chief John Morton sought to clarify the agency’s increasingly controversial deportation programs. ICE … Continue reading

Obama Official Under Fire After “Lost in Detention” Interview

The Obama administration’s immigration policies have outraged many Latino activists.  And according to The Washington Post, one person in particular … Continue reading

Study: 5,100 Kids in Foster Care After Parents Deported

“Even if the [immigration] law is executed with perfection, there will be parents separated from their children,” White House Director … Continue reading

Why Did the Gov’t Make Secure Communities Mandatory?

In October 2010, during a press conference, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano said that the controversial immigration program known … Continue reading

Sec. Napolitano Questioned About “Lost in Detention”

“What is the Department of Homeland Security doing to ensure that immigration detainees are safe from sexual abuse, whether they’re … Continue reading

New Secure Communities Study Reveals Troubling Data

Just yesterday, the Obama administration announced it had deported a record number of illegal immigrants in fiscal year 2011. But … Continue reading

How Much Sexual Abuse Gets “Lost in Detention”?

FRONTLINE and the Investigative Reporting Workshop uncover little evidence that allegations have led to deep investigations

Republican Candidates Take on Immigration

While our film Lost in Detention was airing last night, exploring the Obama administration’s controversial immigration policies, another debate was … Continue reading

Live Chat 1 p.m. ET: Detained in America

Read the full transcript of our live chat with Maria Hinojosa, producer Catherine Rentz and Univision’s Tifani Roberts about “Lost in Detention.”

Map: The U.S. Immigration Detention Boom

A visual look at the fastest-growing incarceration system in the United States, from 1981 to the present.

Roberto Suro: Obama’s Immigration Conundrum

Obama is facing “quite a negative legacy on an issue that has cried out for policy-making,” says Suro, a professor at the Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism and the School of Policy, Planning and Development at the University of Southern California.

Cecilia Muñoz: “Even Broken Laws Have to be Enforced.”

Muñoz has dedicated her career to immigration civil rights, both as a MacArthur fellow and as a senior vice president for the National Council of La Raza. She currently serves as President Obama’s director of intergovernmental affairs, and explains the administration’s current immigration policy: tough enforcement and a record number of deportations, while simultaneously trying to build bipartisan support for comprehensive immigration reform.

What Are Immigration Detainees’ Legal Rights?

How long can immigrants be held? Who are their advocates? We asked Mark Fleming, the national litigation coordinator for the National Immigration Justice Center, for some basic information about legal rights in the immigration detention system.


May. 2, 2000

Jefferson's Blood

(90 minutes) For years there existed a rumor that Thomas Jefferson had a long-standing relationship and several children by Sally Hemings, a woman who was his slave. Now, DNA tests all but prove the rumor true. An early hero of the anti-slavery movement, Jefferson wrote brilliantly of the corrupting influence of slavery on blacks and whites alike. Yet it is now apparent that he lived a dual life, sharing his house with his white daughter and grandchildren while his unacknowledged mistress and his children by her worked in the same house as slaves. In a personal essay, FRONTLINE correspondent Shelby Steele examines Jefferson's life and follows the descendants of Jefferson and Hemings as they undergo DNA testing, search out their family history, and try to sort out their place along America's blurred color line. (Web site »)
Feb. 15, 2000

Assault on Gay America

(60 minutes) On February 19, 1999, in Sylacauga, Alabama, 39-year-old computer programmer Billy Jack Gaither was murdered - the victim of a violent hate crime. One of the convicted killers testified he killed Gaither because he was "queer." Why have gays like Gaither and Matthew Shepard become the targets of such brutality? On February 15, nearly one year after the Gaither murder, FRONTLINE correspondent Forrest Sawyer explores the roots of homophobia in America-as a catalyst for hate crimes and as a phenomenon that permeates our society-and asks how these attitudes, beliefs, and fears contribute to the recent rise in violence against gays. (Web site »)
Oct. 5, 1999

Secrets of the SAT

(60 minutes) How fair are standardized tests? What do they measure? And what's their impact on racial diversity on America's college campuses? FRONTLINE examines the debate over fairness in college admissions, looking at the national obsession with test scores, the multimillion dollar test prep industry, and the legal challenges to race-sensitive admissions policies. A diverse set of students are followed through the stressful college admissions cycle as they dream of attending some of the country's most prestigious universities. (Web site »)
Feb. 10, 1998

The Two Nations of Black America

(60 minutes) Today, America has the largest black middle class in its history, yet half of all black children are born into poverty. Have the walls of segregation tumbled down, only to be replaced by walls of class? FRONTLINE correspondent and Harvard University professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., grapples with the issues facing the 'two nations of black America' as he takes a personal journey that measures the distance between the beneficiaries of affirmative action and those they left behind. (Web site »)
Nov. 26, 1996

Secret Daughter

(150 minutes) FRONTLINE producer June Cross tells the intricate story of her own family through the prism of the changing face of race relations in America. Cross, born to a white mother and an African-American father in the early 1950s, was given away by her mother to live with a black family in Atlantic City when she was four.She only saw her mother and stepfather, TV star Larry Storch, on visits to Hollywood during school vacations. But Cross's mother was afraid her husband's career would be destroyed if the truth about Cross was discovered, so she kept her a secret. FRONTLINE takes viewers on an epic journey across the racial divide, into the hidden world of Hollywood and deep into the complicated relationship between a daughter and the mother who gave her away. (Web site »)
Apr. 30, 1996

The Pilgrimage of Jesse Jackson

(90 minutes) Through five decades, Jesse Jackson has been trying to realize the promise of his own potential he first embraced as a boy in segregated Greenville, South Carolina. His life has been a headlong rush toward that end, fueled by a mix of personal aggrievement, ambition, his own vision of what America should be, and his quixotic but enduring belief that he might be able to change the country and the world. Drawn from journalist Marshall Frady's biography, Pilgrimage, the program is not only a rare in-depth look at the man, but also offers a portrait of race and politics in post-war America. (Web site »)
May. 23, 1995

The Confessions of RosaLee

(60 minutes) The Washington Post ran a week-long series of front-page articles about one Washington, D.C., resident and her family. Reporting on the interrelationships of poverty, racism, crime, illiteracy, and drug use and their persistence over generations, reporter Leon Dash spent four years getting to know RosaLee Cunningham, a thief, former prostitute and drug addict, and the mother of eight children. Dash observed first-hand the poverty, drug use, and crime now cycling through a third generation of RosaLee's family. FRONTLINE examines the reaction and controversy Dash's powerful report had among policymakers and amidst the African-American community and reveals what happens when the reporter-as-objective-observer erases the boundary between himself and his subject.
Oct. 18, 1994

School Colors

(150 minutes) Integration. It was called the greatest social experiment of our generation. But 40 years after Brown v. Bd of Ed, many of our schools are still sharply segregated along color lines. America's changing demographics have tested the limits of our racial and ethnic tolerance, leaving many of us to ask whetther the nation's diversity will enrich us or tear us apart. Follows one year in the lives of Berkeley CA students and principal.
Apr. 27, 1993

LA Is Burning: 5 Reports from a Divided City

(90 minutes) One year after Los Angeles' three days and nights of beatings, looting, and burning, how well do we understand what happened there-and why? Frontline revisits Los Angeles to explore those questions through the eyes of five people who have thought and written about the city from the perspectives of its different communities, races, and classes.
Nov. 24, 1992

In Search of Our Fathers

(60 minutes) Marco Williams was 24 years old when he learned his father's name. It was the first of many things he would discover about himself and his family in a journey into his family's past. Frontline airs the first-person story of Williams's seven-year search to learn about his father, to uncover the circumstances surrounding his birth, and to come to terms with what it means to grow up fatherless.
Oct. 13, 1992

Thomas and Hill: Public Hearing, Private Pain

(60 minutes) Frontline expolores how Clarence Thomas's bitter Supreme Court nomination hearing, replete with charges of sexual harassment, reached deep into the psyche of black America. Through interviews with prominent Aftican-Americans, the program finds that the dynamics of race-being black in America-were inescapably at the heart of the story and that little common understanding existed in the way blacks and whites viewed the nomination battle.
Jun. 23, 1992

Your Loan Is Denied

(60 minutes) Peter and Dolores Green, African-American professionals, are suing a Chicago-area bank for refusing to finance their purchase of the home they have lived in for 30 years. Correspondent Bill Schechner finds mortgage-lending discrimination a systemic problem in America's financial institutions. In a co-production with the Center for Investigative Reporting, Frontline examines the devastating effects of discriminatory lending practices on neighborhoods fighting for economic survival.
Jun. 11, 1991

The Color of Your Skin

(60 minutes) An intimate journey into America's great racial divide, reported by David Maraniss. For 16 weeks, behind a two-way mirror in a small room at the US military's intensive race relations course, a dozen Americans-black, white, and Hispanic-confront each other with their racial anger, pain, and bewilderment. This group's dramatic struggle poses the vital question: can America overcome its racial conflicts and make equality work?
Apr. 2, 1991

Black America's War

(60 minutes) Nearly thirty percent of all US soldiers in the Gulf War were black Americans. But blacks were much more skeptical than whites about the decision to go to war. Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree leads a Frontline town meeting that explores the source of black attitudes and the impact of the war on the lives of black Americans.
Dec. 18, 1990

The Spirit of Crazy Horse

(60 minutes) One hundred years after the massacre at Wounded Knee, Milo Yellow Hair recounts the story of his people-from the lost battles for their land against the invading whites-to the bitter internal divisions and radicalization of the 1970's-to the present-day revival of Sioux cultural pride, which has become a unifying force as the Sioux try to define themselves and their future.
May. 15, 1990

Seven Days in Bensonhurst

(60 minutes) The 1989 murder of Yusef Hawkins by white youths in the Bensonhurst section of New York City set off a racial and political fire storm. On the eve of the first verdicts in the murder case, writer Shelby Steele returns to talk to the participants and tries to unravel the forces that propelled this racial crisis.
Feb. 13, 1990

Throwaway People

(60 minutes) Correspondent Roger Wilkins investigates the economic and social roots of the black underclass, focusing on the struggle of young black men in one neighborhood in Washington, DC.
Feb. 7, 1989

Running with Jesse

(60 minutes) An inside look at the historic 1988 presidential campaign of the Reverend Jesse Jackson. Frontline profiles the Jackson strategy, his relationship with the press and his difficulties with the Jewish community and New York's Mayor Koch. The program chronicles the hopes and the hype of a campaign that became a crusade.
Jun. 21, 1988

Indian Country

(60 minutes) The Quinault Indians of Washington State seem to have everything-strong leadership, a landmark court victory guaranteeing fishing rights, business deals with the Japanese, and a lush, beautiful reservation. But the Quinaults still face crushing problems-unemployment, poverty, alcoholism, and suicide. Frontline reporter Mark Trahant searches for answers to the Quinault's dilemma in the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Congress, the White House and in the heart of the Quinault people.
May. 10, 1988

Racism 101

(60 minutes) Frontline explores the disturbing increase in racial incidents and violence on America's college compuses. The attitudes of black and white students reveal increasing tensions at some of the country's best universities where years after the civil rights struggle, full integration is still only a dream.
Jun. 16, 1987

Keeping the Faith

(60 minutes) The black church was once the soul of its community. It was a rallying point and a force for change. Now, as the black middle class grows and the church evolves, correspondent Roger Wilkins asks whom does it serve and to what end?
May. 5, 1987

The Bombing of West Philly

(60 minutes) 'I could hear the bullets all around me, hitting all around the house. I was forced back by gunfire,' says Ramona Africa, the only adult survivor of MOVE, a small, violent, urban cult. Years of tension ended May 13, 1985, when police bombed Africa's house. The surrounding neighborhood burned out of control, leaving 250 homeless. Frontline correspondent Leon Dash examines why the bombing really happened.
Jun. 17, 1986

Assault on Affirmative Action

(60 minutes) The Supreme Court ruled against a Memphis firefighter who successfully fought for an affirmative action plan for the hiring of fellow firefighters in 1984. As a result, the Justice Department asked 50 cities to tighten their affirmative action policies. Correspondent George Curry examines the 20 year conflict over these policies and reveals the point of view of those whom it affects.
May. 20, 1986

The Bloods of 'Nam

(60 minutes) A high percentage of men on the frontlines in Vietnam were young, poor, undereducated, and black. By most accounts, they had the highest casualties. But these young men say they were fighting two wars-against the enemy and against discrimination. Correspondent Wallace Terry, the author of 'Bloods,' the national bestseller on which this film is based, talks with black veterans who fought discrimination in Vietnam and who later confronted disillusionment when they came home.
Apr. 2, 1984

The Struggle for Birmingham

(60 minutes) This special election report focuses on Birmingham, Alabama, which was a key battlefield in the black struggle for civil rights in the 1960's. Now, 20 years later, Birmingham is one of the new battlefields for a mature black political movement. Frontline correspondent Richard Reeves examines black political power today and the struggle for the heart and soul of the black voter.
Mar. 7, 1983

Children of Pride

(60 minutes) Kojo Odo, a 42 year-old single black man, took in his first child a decade ago-a 7 year old boy with his arm missing. No one wanted the youngster. Each of Odo's 21 children came to him with a physical or mental handicap. Frontline looks at the daily life of this remarkable family and Odo's battle to keep the family together.
Jan. 31, 1983

In the Shadow of the Capitol

(60 minutes) Frontline correspondent Charles Cobb journeys to a Washington, DC that tourists rarely see. The nation's capital, seventy-five percent black, faces widespread poverty, yet it is run by some of the civil-rights movement's most effective and militant organizers, including Mayor Marion Barry.



Privacy Policy   Journalistic Guidelines   PBS Privacy Policy   PBS Terms of Use   Corporate Sponsorship
FRONTLINE is a registered trademark of WGBH Educational Foundation.
Web Site Copyright ©1995-2013 WGBH Educational Foundation
PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.