I Refuse

Episodes

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01My Son, Emmett Till2013021520170216 (BBC7)

Powerful short story about an incident that galvanised the American civil rights movement.

First in a series of three short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks, who famously refused to move seats on an Alabama bus to accommodate white passengers. The stories illustrate moments of resistance and are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by ordinary people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Today, writer Fred D'Aguiar focuses upon a true story, a moment of resistance which helped to ignite the American Civil Rights Movement. In August 1955, a fourteen year old black boy, Emmett Till, who was visiting relatives in Mississippi, was murdered by two white men because he had whistled at a white woman. When his badly beaten body was recovered, his mother refused to allow the coffin lid to be closed: she wanted the world to see what had been done to her son.

It was an act that galvanised the emerging civil rights movement. Three months later, in Montgomery Alabama, Rosa Parks refused to relinquish her seat. She is quoted as saying: "I thought about Emmett Till, and I could not go back. My legs and feet were not hurting, that is a stereotype. I paid the same fare as others, and I felt violated. I was not going back."

Read by Adjoa Andoh.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

Today, writer Fred D'Aguiar focuses upon a true story, a moment of resistance which helped to ignite the American Civil Rights Movement. In August 1955, a fourteen year old black man, Emmett Till, who was visiting relatives in Mississippi, was murdered by two white men because he had whistled at a white woman. When his badly beaten body was recovered, his mother refused to allow the coffin lid to be closed: she wanted the world to see what had been done to her son.

01My Son, Emmett Till20130215

First in a series of three short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks, who famously refused to move seats on an Alabama bus to accommodate white passengers. The stories illustrate moments of resistance and are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by ordinary people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Today, writer Fred D'Aguiar focuses upon a true story, a moment of resistance which helped to ignite the American Civil Rights Movement. In August 1955, a fourteen year old black man, Emmett Till, who was visiting relatives in Mississippi, was murdered by two white men because he had whistled at a white woman. When his badly beaten body was recovered, his mother refused to allow the coffin lid to be closed: she wanted the world to see what had been done to her son.

It was an act that galvanised the emerging civil rights movement. Three months later, in Montgomery Alabama, Rosa Parks refused to relinquish her seat. She is quoted as saying: "I thought about Emmett Till, and I could not go back. My legs and feet were not hurting, that is a stereotype. I paid the same fare as others, and I felt violated. I was not going back."

Read by Adjoa Andoh.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

02Hamid In The Playhouse20130222

New short story by the award-winning author Helen Dunmore. A woman in her sixties faces a terrible dilemma when she discovers a student from the neighbouring block of flats hiding in her grandson's playhouse: Hamid is wanted for questioning by the anti-terrorist squad.

This is the second in a series of three short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks, who famously refused to move seats on an Alabama bus to accommodate white passengers. The stories illustrate moments of resistance and are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by ordinary people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Read by Joanna Tope.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

02Hamid In The Playhouse2013022220170217 (BBC7)

New short story by the award-winning author Helen Dunmore. A woman in her sixties faces a terrible dilemma when she discovers a student from the neighbouring block of flats hiding in her grandson's playhouse: Hamid is wanted for questioning by the anti-terrorist squad.

This is the second in a series of three short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks, who famously refused to move seats on an Alabama bus to accommodate white passengers. The stories illustrate moments of resistance and are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by ordinary people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Read by Joanna Tope.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

A woman faces a dilemma when she discovers a student wanted by the anti-terrorist squad.

03 LASTThe Fire The Fire20130301

Last in a series of short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks. Illustrating moments of resistance, the stories are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Hisham Matar completes the series with a story that takes a wry look at the pressures brought to bear upon a famous author, who is in exile from his homeland, by fellow countrymen and exiles.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

03 LASTThe Fire The Fire2013030120170220 (BBC7)

Last in a series of short stories commissioned to mark the centenary of the birth of the American Civil Rights heroine Rosa Parks. Illustrating moments of resistance, the stories are inspired by acts of determination and non-cooperation, committed by people (real or imagined) fighting against prevailing attitudes and political authority.

Hisham Matar completes the series with a story that takes a wry look at the pressures brought to bear upon a famous author, who is in exile from his homeland, by fellow countrymen and exiles.

Produced by Kirsteen Cameron.

Darkly comic tale about the pressures placed on an exiled writer by his fellow countrymen.