A prolific screenwriter, playwright and filmmaker shared her story with Stephens College students today as part of the Citizen Jane Lecture Series.
Kathleen McGhee-Anderson’s credits include episodes of “Little House on the Prairie,” “Charles In Charge” and “Lincoln Heights.”
This morning’s workshop, “Learning to Speak Your Truth,” followed the screening of her film “Color of Courage” last night on campus. The film was based on her grandparent’s landmark housing legal battle that ultimately abolished racially restrictive housing covenants in the U.S.
“My grandparents fought a significant Civil Rights battle that went all the way to the Supreme Court,” she said. “Because of our family, African-Americans could legally live in any neighborhood.”
McGhee-Anderson’s grandfather was a light-skinned man who could pass for white in the racially charged 1940s. He bought a home in an all-white neighborhood, after which the family was sued and harassed by neighbors. Ultimately, after winning their battle to stay in their home, the couple became lifelong friends with the white neighbors who had brought the suit against them. The movie premiered on the USA Network in 1999.
McGhee-Anderson, one of the first African-Americans to write for screen, is on the faculty of the M.F.A. in TV and Screenwriting at Stephens, a low-residency program that will begin in the fall.
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