Lance Warren ’04 BA (Hist/PSc) co-directs new film “An Outrage,” documenting the history of lynching in the American South


Lance Warren and his wife, Hannah Ayers, have directed a new documentary film on the history of Southern lynching: An Outrage, which premiered at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in March of 2017. Warren and Ayers filmed on-location at lynching sites in six states, meeting descendants of victims and activists working to memorialize this past. They also interviewed scholars who have deep personal connections to the history of the Jim Crow South. The result is an unusual historical documentary that sheds the standard tropes of the form, educating while also serving as a hub for action. An Outrage lays bare a history of racial terror long tucked-away in dusty archives and family secrets. And the film demonstrates how the pain of those memories — so little integrated into American history curricula at the middle, high school, and college levels — fuels the injustices that have sparked movements like Black Lives Matter. Just before the film’s premiere, the Southern Poverty Law Center recognized the value of An Outrage in grappling with a very present past. The civil rights advocacy group, which fields an anti-bias education program called Teaching Tolerance, acquired the film’s K-12 distribution rights, and will deploy An Outrage for use by its network of nearly 500,000 teachers — and their millions of students — this fall. More information about the film can be found at the film’s website and in the recent Vice article: “Why Kids Need to Learn About Lynching.


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