Earlier this morning, Bree Newsome scaled the flagpole at the South Carolina statehouse in Columbia and took down the Confederate Flag. But before Newsome became a national hero, she was known as a filmmaker—and you can watch one of her short films online.

Here’s a plot description of this short film, “Wake”:

A repressed woman murders her domineering father, freeing herself to pursue her heart’s desire. Using a local folk magic called “root work”, she conjures a demon to aid her in creating the man of her dreams— but soon finds herself in a waking nightmare.


“Wake” is a dark, tense story that earned Newsome the Outstanding Independent Short Film award in the 2012 Black Reel Awards and the Best Short Film at BET Urban World Film Festival. She’s spoken about the importance of black science fiction and fantasy fiction in the past, noting that Octavia Butler was an influence in her own work.

And this work of magical realism has also been shown in the classroom:


[Tananarive Due]

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