Publisher Johns Hopkins Advanced Academic Programs

The February 15 community screening of the documentary Silver Dollar Road, hosted by the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences’ Advanced Academic Programs division, drew an engaged crowd and featured a thought-provoking panel discussion of the film’s central themes.

Directed by Academy Award nominee Raoul Peck, Silver Dollar Road details one family’s harrowing experience with real estate developers and explores issues related to Black land ownership, the legal system, and the racial wealth gap.

Silver Dollar Road panel, left to right: Lawrence Jackson, Raoul Peck (director), Lizzie Presser, Marcus A. R. Childress. Photo by Will Kirk.
Silver Dollar Road panel, left to right: Lawrence Jackson, Raoul Peck (director), Lizzie Presser, Marcus A. R. Childress. Photo by Will Kirk.

Following the film screening in the auditorium of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg Center at 555 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, JHU Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of English and History Lawrence Jackson moderated a panel discussion. The panel featured Peck; ProPublica journalist Lizzie Presser, whose reporting inspired the film; and Marcus A.R. Childress, former Investigative Counsel to the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol and a partner at Jenner & Block. A reception sponsored by Amazon Studios wrapped up the evening.

“This type of event builds on the promise of the Hopkins Bloomberg Center, which offers us a venue in the nation’s capital to share the many strengths of the Krieger School with the community and allows us to be at the heart of vital dialogues,” says Veronica Donahue, Associate Dean for Graduate and Professional Programs for the Krieger School. “We were very fortunate to have such an expert and insightful panel to lead our discussion and are grateful for everyone who made the event possible, including Amazon Studios for bringing attention to this important topic.”

Audience at screening of Silver Dollar Road.
Photo by Will Kirk.

The event is one of several film screenings the MA in Film and Media program plans to bring to the community in the coming year. “A fundamental aspect of our program is the central importance of good storytelling,” says MA in Film and Media Program Director Sig Libowitz. “And, in particular, what we refer to as ‘Stories that Matter’—stories that tackle social, cultural, science, or environmental issues in a vibrant, compelling manner. Silver Dollar Road is a terrific example of a story that matters. It explores, challenges, and calls attention to important social and legal issues in our country that many of us are completely unaware of—and wakes us up!”

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