These are companion videos to my research on Alex Haley’s Roots. The culmination of that work may be found in my forthcoming book, Identifying Roots: Alex Haley and the Anthropology of Scriptures (Equinox 2018). Follow discussion of that work on Twitter at #idRoots.

This excerpt of Roots features Kunta’s uproot from his sense of “home” as an example of scriptural violence.  The reading is voiced by Meredith Coleman-Tobias.


This excerpt shows Kunta Kinte learning about the scriptures of the New World as described by his friend Fiddler. Fiddler and Kunta are seen routing between scriptures in an effort to make sense of the world–at many times to no avail. The reading is voiced by Meredith Coleman-Tobias.


Here Kunta Kinte begins to take root, making scriptures do work for him and his new family–if even only briefly. But his short-term success would set a precedent for generations. The reading is voiced by Meredith Coleman-Tobias.


This one minute mashup features various pop-culture significations on Alex Haley’s Roots: The Saga of an American Family (1976) and its derivations. This video specifically recalls references made to the story and character of Kunta Kinte.