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Year Twelve

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January 4, 2013
Film Screening on Jan. 13 Launches This Year's Programming

Unchained MemoriesSaratoga Reads and SUNY Empire State College will present a screening of the HBO documentary Unchained Memories: Readings from Slave Narratives on Sunday, Jan. 13, 2 p.m. at the Empire State College Center for Distance Learning, 113 West Ave, Saratoga Springs. The film will be followed by discussion led by members of the ESC faculty.

The screening will kick off a series of events related to this year's Saratoga Reads book of choice, Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup.

The material used for Unchained Memoriesdates back to the 1930s, when journalists, under the auspices of the WPA's Federal Writers' Project, conducted thousands of interviews with former slaves who had been emancipated at the end of the Civil War.

"These faithfully transcribed 'slave narratives' are vividly read (acted, actually) here by a host of distinguished performers ranging from Samuel L. Jackson to Oprah Winfrey, from Don Cheadle to Angela Basset, with narration by Whoopi Goldberg," said Sam Graham, editorial reviewer for "This is a moving record of bitter, weary, yet resilient and quietly proud people living with memories that never would, or could, fade." The narratives in the film are complemented by archival photographs, period images, and music.

The event is open to the public free of charge. Light refreshments will be served.

Please join us on Jan. 13 to kick off a great season of Saratoga Reads programming!