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Birth of a Nation


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Suggestions for Further Reading

1 . Which of these prominent Civil War events is reenacted in The Birth of a Nation?

2 . Which character is a leading abolitionist politician?

3 . The academic writings of which U.S. President are cited in Griffith’s footnotes?

4 . According to Griffith’s intertitles, what is Austin Stoneman’s greatest weakness?

5 . Who are the Cameron boys?

6 . Who are the Stoneman boys?

7 . What does Ben Cameron keep in his uniform while out on the battlefield?

8 . How does Elsie help during the war?

9 . What does Ben present to Elsie as a token of his love as they walk in the forest?

10 . Writings from what book did Griffith reference to support his racist views?

11 . Which cities figure most prominently in The Birth of a Nation?

12 . How do D. W. Griffith and Billy Bitzer convey the more intimate moments of the raging war?

13 . What was one of the unfortunate effects of the success of The Birth of a Nation?

14 . What is the name of the line that divides the Stonemans from the Camerons?

15 . What is the title of the Rev. Thomas Dixon’s play on which much of The Birth of a Nation is based?

16 . Which “solution” to America’s strife was in the film’s original print, but was cut due to protests?

17 . After the Ku Klux Klan lynches Gus, what do they do with his body?

18 . Which two characters are present at Ford’s Theater?

19 . Which organization protested The Birth of a Nation and attempted to organize boycotts of it?

20 . How many of the four main black or mulatto roles—Silas Lynch, Lydia, Gus, and Mammy—are performed by black actors?

21 . How does the Union gain a crucial advantage that signals the beginning of the end for the Confederacy?

22 . Who revokes Ben Cameron’s death sentence?

23 . What inspires Ben to form the Ku Klux Klan?

24 . Why was the $2 ticket price for The Birth of a Nation significant?

25 . What did Griffith do before directing The Birth of a Nation?

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