History KS3 / GCSE: Madame C. J. Walker, the first female African American millionaire
Dr. Amanda Foreman visits the family archive of Madame C. J. Walker to examine her rise to power.
Photographs, documents and artifacts illustrate Walker’s journey from growing up on an old slave plantation to becoming the first African American businesswoman.
During her lifetime, Walker built a large and prosperous business empire.
She went on to use her success in business to advance the civil rights of African Americans in early 20th century America.
Given the oppressive racist and sexist environment in America during this era, Walker’s achievements appear all the more remarkable.
This short film is from the BBC Two series, The Ascent of Woman.
In pairs, pupils could be asked to draw up a diagram comparing Walker to other significant campaigners such as Rosa Parks, Maya Angelou and Ella Baker.
Pupils could look at aspects such as: upbringing, beliefs, campaigns, achievements, and legacy.
This short film is suitable for teaching history at KS3 and KS4/GCSE in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and Fourth Level and National 4 and 5 in Scotland.