Study Guide Themes Archives: Conflict

For Akheem

Daje Shelton, a 17-year-old girl from St. Louis, just wants to do the right thing. But growing up in a tough neighborhood, she can’t catch a break: she’s struggling in school; she’s distracted by boys; and she’s surrounded by a culture of violence and brutality. The fatal shooting of Michael Brown Jr. provides a powerful backdrop for this masterfully crafted portrait of working-class urban life.

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Benji documents the November 1984 death and cultural impact of Ben Wilson, a 17-year-old from the South Side of Chicago who was regarded as the best basketball player in the country.

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