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American Experience is TV's most-watched history series and brings to life the compelling stories from our past that inform our understanding of the world today.
On a steamy afternoon in August 1963, a thirty-four-year-old minister gave a speech that enthralled a crowd of more than two hundred thousand people gathered at Washington's Lincoln Memorial and millions more across the country who watched on television. With passion and precision, he proclaimed his vision of a nation free of racism, declaring, "Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children."
What came to be known as the "I Have A Dream" speech was a high point in the public career of Martin Luther King, Jr. But it was also a turning point in his personal life, as he embarked on a controversial, often lonely struggle to redefine and redirect the movement he had helped lead. The quest would not end until his untimely death five years later.
For nearly half a century, Russian emigrant Emma Goldman was the most controversial woman in America, taunting the mainstream with her fervent attacks on government, big business, and war. To the tabloids, she was "Red Emma, queen of the anarchists," but many admired Goldman for her defense of labor rights, women's emancipation, birth control, and free speech.
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