Lost Voices: X’s Story Restored

Welcome to the Labragirl Film Project’s weekly film literacy discussion. Every Monday morning Labragirl provides a resource, activity, or methodological discussion to help incorporate film analysis into your classroom.

Last week we joined a conversation from our sister company – Labragirl Pictures‘ blog.  This discussion about the film The Stoning of Soraya M. combined film analysis with two of the Labragirl Film Project’s goals:

  • Fostering a global perspective
  • Addressing racial and gender inequalities

This week we join another conversation from our sister company – Labragirl Pictures‘ blog. This week we talk about Spike Lee’s visual portrayal of Malcolm X. This week’s discussion is aligned with Labragirl Film Project’s goal of helping students see and discuss how moving images shape our understanding of the past.

Please comment below or discuss with us on 



Classroom Discussion Synopsis: 

This week’s Moving Images-Moving Forward conversation explores Spike Lee’s film Malcolm X.

Grade Level: High School & College

Educational Goals:

  • Help students apply film analysis and film reading skills to larger historical discussions
  • Help students think critically about their interactions with moving images
  • Encourage students to navigate critical thinking discussions about moving images & historical images

Malcolm X, 1993

{Click on image for source information.}

In 1992, Spike Lee’s Malcolm X brought an important voice back to the public sphere. Clearly, in his time, this passionate Civil Rights leader was a household name. However, with the passing of time, Malcolm X and many of the other Civil Rights leaders’ names faded from popular culture discussions.

Malcolm X Movie Trailer

In fact, during my years teaching history I was consistently amazed by the number of students who had not heard of Malcolm X and/or did not know of his role in the Civil Rights Movement. Malcolm X brought the story of an important Civil Rights Leader back into the public sphere, allowing us a more robust image of this pivotal time period in American history.

Denzel Washington as Malcolm X. {Click on image for source information.}

What do you think about Spike Lee’s portrayal of Malcolm X?

What do you think of the movie?

How does Lee’s portrayal of Malcolm X shape the way we understand the Civil Rights Movement?

We’d love to discuss with you.




Did you use any of these discussions or activities in your classroom? How did it go?

Do you teach film reading and film analysis?

What are some exercises you use?

We’d love to hear from you.

Please comment below or discuss with us on .

*Disclaimer: All movie clips are suggestions for class use, only. All instructors should screen clips to determine if they are appropriate to use in their classrooms. 


UP NEXT 6/10: It’s Summertime!

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Bring Labragirl into your classroom. Contact us at info@labragirlfilmproject.org or fill out our Interest & Inquiry Form.


Previous Blog Entries

Lost Voices: The Stoning of Soraya M.

Film & Cultural Memory I

Film Education

Relevance – the 4th ‘R’

Making Film I

Talking Film I

Downton Abbey in Your Class #1 – Roll Sound!

Reading Film

Fictional Projections of History

Think Globally Using Film

Our Relationship with Movies

Moving Past Historical Accuracy

Images Telling Stories

Film Shaping History

Think Film Images


©2013 Labragirl Film Project. All rights reserved.


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