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Film Discussion Guide

Download the discussion guide for the documentary American Promise and use it for facilitating conversation about this film at home, in the classroom or at community screenings.

American Promise: Discussion Guide

Download: Full-color PDF | Printer-friendly PDF

This guide is an invitation to dialogue. It is based on a belief in the power of human connection, designed for people who want to use American Promise to engage family, friends, classmates, colleagues and communities. In contrast to initiatives that foster debates in which participants try to convince others that they are right, this document envisions conversations undertaken in a spirit of openness in which people try to understand one another and expand their thinking by sharing viewpoints and listening actively. The discussion prompts are intentionally crafted to help a wide range of audiences think more deeply about the issues in the film. Rather than attempting to address them all, choose one or two that best meet your needs and interests. And be sure to leave time to consider taking action. Planning next steps can help people leave the room feeling energized and optimistic, even in instances when conversations have been difficult.

Download the discussion guide for American Promise:

Full-color PDF | Printer-friendly PDF

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Film Information

American Promise (120 min.)

Premiere Date: February 3, 2014

Streaming Dates: Expired

Photos: Download Here

Trailer: Link | Embed

Filmmakers: Joe Brewster , Michèle Stephenson Bio | Interview | Statement

Press: Press Release | Idris and Seun: Milestones | Fact Sheet | Critical Acclaim


Joe Brewster
Joe Brewster
Michèle Stephenson
Michèle Stephenson

Film Update

Critical Acclaim

Not only provides illuminating insights into racial and cultural issues, but explores family dynamics common to all”

— Peter Keough, The Boston Globe

While they didn't set out to make a film about what newspaper columnists refer to as the 'black male achievement gap,' Brewster and Stephenson have done just that, and it's hard to imagine a more penetrating and powerful one.”

— Godfrey Cheshire,

In his State of the Union address this week, President Barack Obama spoke about making the American Dream possible for everyone. He noted that minorities still face challenges that other Americans do not. The documentary American Promise explores race, class and opportunity in America...Tough...heartbreaking.”

— Anne-Marie Green, CBS News "Up to the Minute"

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