Los Angeles Times

RaMell Ross is seeking 'visual justice' for 'Hale County'

For many black artists - musicians, filmmakers, painters, writers, etc. - art is often burdened with the responsibility of humanizing our communities. There's been a historical obligation to prove to the world that black folks hurt and love and laugh and live just like their white counterparts, like humans.

Director RaMell Ross rejects this notion.

"I don't think that people think that (other) people aren't human. I think they think they're inferior," he said, "and inferiority is just as dangerous as a person saying (another) person is not human. So for me, it's more about connecting people to know that the similarities (between us) are rooted in something that is larger and 'they' are not inferior."

This is one of the objectives of Ross' Sundance documentary, "Hale County This Morning, This Evening," which takes a look at the Alabama Black Belt county home to just under 15,000 people, almost 60 percent of whom are black, according to

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