about akata documentary
Victoria grew up in Silver Spring, MD attending predominately White schools. Whether good or bad, but mostly bad, her skin color has always been a topic of discussion in school playgrounds or lunch cafeterias. After seeing the movie “Roots”, in her forth grade Social Studies class, she experienced an increased in teasing from her fellow classmates. At that tender age, she secretly decided to distance her self from Africa as a whole.
In the fall of 2006, Victoria was an undergraduate at Trinity Washington University, a woman’s college, located in Washington DC. Although the student body was predominately Black, it was segregated. The African Americans hanged around African Americans, and the trend continued with the West African community, East African community etc. Victoria’s undergrad experience confirmed her 4th grade declaration; I was too Black to “Black”, but also too American to be African. This same attitude followed her through out her graduate school years, living in Hawaii, until she had to return back to home to Silver Spring, MD after graduating.
After landing a job at a Native American law firm as a Digital Marketing Manager, she began to have daily conversations around Native American history, pride and culture. Victoria soon realized that, although she knew her history, the pride and culture was missing. Thus Akata Documentary was born.
Akata Documentary tells Victoria Gregg’s story, a driven 27-year-old African American woman who is determined to discover the birthplace of her ancestors. Victoria’s parents take an DNA test which enables her to pinpoint her African and European lineage. After spending months inserting names into the family tree, she hits a roadblock and turns her attention to researching slave narratives. Her world view dramatically changes when she comes across a will from a slave owner, Joseph Gregg, who owned her ancestors and is responsible for her family’s last name. She takes a trip to South Carolina and Atlanta not only to visit Joseph Gregg’s plantation but to come face to face with one of his descendants. Eventually, the story will end in the African coasts. Just like Alex Haley, Victoria is trying to find her Kunta Kinte.
This film is a call to action which encourages African Americans to find their roots and encourage them to travel to Africa. With our controversial title, this film will be used a tool to teach African’s within the diaspora about African American history, dismantle stereotypes used to divide us and to encourage Pan-Africanism.
#GenealogyIsLit #MoreThanBlack #AkataDocumentary