Attica Interviews (Excerpt)

1971 | 00:30:00 | United States | English | B&W | Mono | 4:3 | 1/2" open reel video

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: African-American, Crime or Violence, Incarceration, Interview, Race

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Portable Channel, a community documentary group in Rochester, New York, was one of the first small format video centers to have an ongoing relationship with a PBS affiliate (WXXI). Portapakers interviewed Sinclair Scott, a member of the negotiating team that went into Attica when the prisoners' rebelled at the federal prison in September 1971. Thirty-eight guards were taken hostage after prisoners' demands to improve their conditions were ignored. After a three day stand-off between inmates and authorities, Governor Nelson Rockefeller called in the National Guard. During that action, 39 prisoners and hostages were killed. Culpability surrounding the deaths is still being argued in federal court today. The events at Attica brought national attention to conditions in and policies regarding American prisons. Portable Channel conducted interviews with lawyers, negotiators, and community members over a four-month period following the rebellion. Note: This excerpt was taken from one of the unedited interviews housed in a regional archive.

The original total running time for this piece is 30:00. An excerpt of this title (8:44) is only available on Surveying the First Decade: Volume 2.