Standing on My Sisters’ Shoulders

Film. By Joan Sadoff, Robert Sadoff, and Laura Lipson. 2002. 60 minutes.
Documentary film on women in the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi.

Time Periods: 20th Century, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974
Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Organizing, Women's History

Standing on My Sisters' ShouldersOne of the best films on the Civil Rights Movement, this award-winning documentary reveals the movement in Mississippi in the 1950s and 60s from the point of view of the courageous women who lived it — and emerged as its grassroots leaders.

Standing on My Sisters’ Shoulders is full of riveting historical footage and original interviews with Fannie Lou Hamer, Annie Devine, Unita Blackwell, Mae Bertha Carter, Victoria Gray Adams, Dorie Ladner, and more. Voter registration, the fight for equal education, desegregation, and of course the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party’s challenge at the Democratic Convention are featured.

Victoria Jackson Gray Adams

Victoria Jackson Gray Adams at the 1964 Democratic convention. By George Ballis/Take Stock.

“If you can show just one film on the Civil Rights Movement, this should be the one. An exquisite tool for high school and college teachers of history, women’s studies, African American studies, and related subjects. Ella Baker, Fannie Lou Hamer, Unita Blackwell, and countless others at last get the recognition they deserve.” —Pricilla Murolo, Professor of History and Director of the Women’s History program, Sarah Lawrence

“A powerful and moving film about ordinary women armed with sheer determination…” —Jennifer Moffet, Jackson Free Press

A film by Joan SadoffDr. Robert Sadoff and Laura J. Lipson. Distributed by Women Make Movies.

More info about the film.