"Finding My Father" follows 16 young women and men taking a leap of faith in the hope of connecting with their biological fathers for the first time. Using social media, distant family connections, and the assistance of private investigators, these bold young people attempt to piece together details about their fathers' lives and current whereabouts in order to answer key questions and heal the emotional scars left by their absence. The journeys often take unexpected turns, including discovering previously unknown siblings, finding out a father is currently homeless and learning that a dad has lived only an hour away for his biological child's entire life. The series examines the importance of family to young people's identity and explores the lengths they will go in order to find their fathers - and, in a way, a piece of themselves.
Runtime: 60 minutes
Finding My Father - In Full Color (memoir) - Netflix
In Full Color: Finding My Place in a Black and White World is the personal memoir of American civil rights activist Rachel Dolezal. It was published in 2017 by BenBella Books, almost two years after the controversy about her racial identity in June 2015. The Guardian reported that 30 publishing houses turned down the manuscript before BenBella Books printed it in March 2017.
Finding My Father - Summary - Netflix
Understanding how miseducation about race and the cultural boundaries and codes that have been put into place in American society might conflict with my true nature, I decided that the most honest and real way for me to live was to be Black without any explanations, reservations, apologies, or room for negotiation. It had taken me so many years to finally embrace who I was and love myself that I didn't want to my understandings of myself to be muddled by other people's perceptions of misunderstandings.
In Full Color is an overview of Dolezal's life with an emphasis on how she came to identify as “black”. Dolezal begins by describing her upbringing by “fundamentalist Christian” parents in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Montana, United States. From an early age, she describes being fascinated with Africa and African culture. While Dolezal was a teenager her parents, Larry and Ruthanne Dolezal, adopted four African-American children. Dolezal describes that “while I was teaching my younger siblings about Black culture and history: I began to feel even more connected to it myself. I began to see the world through Black eyes and anything that had to do with Blackness or Africa always grabbed my attention.” Dolezal moved to Jackson, Mississippi in 1996 to attend Belhaven College where she became involved in the Black Student Association. At college, she describes adopting a more “Afrocentric look” and living in a predominately African-American neighbourhood of West-Jackson. While living in West-Jackson and working at the local United Parcel Service distribution centre, Dolezal meet and then married Kevin Moore. After graduating from Belhaven, Dolezal enrolled in a Master of Fine Arts at Howard University. In her final year at Howard, she became pregnant and gave birth to a son, Franklin. Dolezal, Moore and Franklin then moved to Bonners Feery, Idaho. Moore, says Dolezal was abusive, and she describes him at one point shoving her against a wall. Dozeval left Moore, moved to Coeur d'Alene Idaho, and secured custody of Franklin. Over time Dolezal became estranged from her parents but remained in contact with two of her siblings; Esther and Izaiah. (She would eventually be awarded custody of Izaiah in 2010.) Dolezal later found solace in Albert Wilkerson, who became for her, a type of father-figure. In 2005 Dolezal was appointed as an adjunct professor at North Idaho College teaching illustration, design and art history. Then in 2007 she also took on a teaching role at Eastern Washington University teaching African-American Art History. Dolezal went on contribute to a variety of classes such as “The Black Woman's Struggle, African American History: From 1877 to Present, and Introduction to Race and Culture Studies” at Eastern Washington University. While also teaching at the two universities Dolezal worked part-time at the Human Rights Education Institute. During the noughties Dolezal says she began to live her life as a “black woman” and she observes that “it made my life infinitely better.” Although, it also made her life harder because she felt stigmatised by racist comments and behaviour. Dolezal describes how difficult it became to communicate how she identified herself.
Dolezal became a self-described “academic activist” joining the local chapter of the NAACP and serving on a police oversight board. She also describes some of the racism Izaiah and Franklin experienced at school. In early 2015 Dolezal received a suspicious package in the NAACP post office box. On June 10, 2015, a reporter, Jeff Humphrey, from a local Television station KXLY confronted Dolezal, and asked her first about the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the package and then eventually asked if she was African American. She replied after a pause that “I don't understand the question” and ducked away as Humphrey asked if Wilkerson was her father. In the ensuring media-storm, the NAACP national leadership was initially supportive, issuing a supportive press release. However, the local chapter was not supportive so Dolezal resigned. Initially, the City of Spokane was going to sue Dolezal for “checking Black” on the application she filled out for the Police Oversight Board but dropped the suit later. Her contract at the Eastern Washington University was then not renewed. Dolezal was determined to tell her side of the story but found that despite being promised a favourable hearing at a number of Television interviews she was asked pointedly about her racial identity and how she practically appeared as Black. Matt Lauer on The Today Show asked how Dolezal had changed her appearance. On The View Amber Payne asked if Dolezal “was willing to acknowledge that level of white privilege that you took in choosing to be Black.”
Finding My Father - References - Netflix