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This chapter draws attention to film as a medium that both reinforces and contests images of progress. After reviewing themes that are pertinent to race and film studies as well as critical theory, this chapter looks at films that offer different ways of viewing and thinking about race, progress, and remembrance. Stanley Kramer’s film Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner prompts the viewer to align black freedom struggles with a postracial, forward-gazing imaginary that downplays the connections between race, class, and gender. Sidney Poitier’s character, the chapter argues, anticipates yearnings for a position that is beyond race; he becomes a signifier...

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