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Importance of Benjamin Banneker for Our Society: Opinion Essay and Film Proposal

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Film Proposal

When learning the history of historic people and events, the curiosity that people say called the cat takes over making the story even more fascinated to learn about in the first place. The people’s lives that can be described through the world of film varies from many different people in their different ways of learning in ordered to have their stories shared and how their achievements came to be shown to the world. Some examples of African American’s that had their stories shared to world could include Martin Luther King with the movie Selma, or Jackie Robinson with the movie 42. One example also being the movie that made its debut in 2016 called hidden figures about the three African American women who work for NASA, those women being Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson. When choosing someone to have a movie about them knowing their lives but also wanting more to learn about them to further the insight that one may have about to person to demonstrate how the lives of those people have truly affected others.

The African American figure that was found to be most interesting and would love to display through a movie screen for me would be Benjamin Banneker. The reason that Benjamin Banneker should be considered an important figure to have a movie made about him is the fact that not only was he a famous author, but he also invented the wooden clock while also being an astronomer. When reading back to Benjamin’s past realizing all of things he accomplished in his life while helping everyone else with his inventions and books that was written by him. Benjamin’s life has a very telling story that would be interesting to most seeing as he invented the wooden clock as well as other achieving many things as an astronomer. The movie about Benjamin’s life should demonstrate the making of the clock as well as the process in coming up with concept of the wooden clock to begin with as well as showing the interest in astronomer and demonstrating the things that he was self-taught. People in the world today do not understand the making of things that are used today such as the wooden clock that was invented by Benjamin Banneker.

The story about Benjamin Banneker’s life when discussing the movie will be about the workings of his inventions such as the wooden clock and others such as the invention of the six annual farmer’s almanacs. Banneker’s way of inventing the Almanacs was a way used by ephemeris that he either calculated himself or had help by Thomas Jefferson. “In 1792, Banneker published an Almanac, based on his own painstakingly calculated ephemeris (table of the position of celestial bodies), that also included commentaries, literature, and fillers that had a political and humanitarian purpose” (Paragraph 7 Line 1 When Benjamin Banneker was learning his way being self-taught, had only seen to sorts of timepieces in his life even by the age of 22 so seeing as the sundial and pocket watching, Banneker took it upon himself to build a clock strictly made of wood basing it on drawing and even calculations that he has constructed before the making of the clock. The clock then being destroyed after forty years due to a fire, seeing as the clock lasting most of Banneker’s life seeing as his invention lasting for a very long life before being destroyed.

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The movie of Benjamin Banneker’s life will demonstrate the making of the clock and Almanacs which in correlation can be seen as some of Benjamin Banneker’s life achievements to be known as the most famous inventions for his time being from 1731 to 1806. The inventions of Banneker have shown to be used more in his life being as he created the clock when he was 22 years old while Benjamin was able to use the skills that he learned by himself in such ways by using his mathematical and mechanical teachings. The clock that was invented by Banneker was based all on wood that he used a knife to use for the carvings in order to get the exact design that he was envisioning for the clock to look like. “According to ‘Gay & Lesbian Biography,’ Banneker ‘applied his natural mechanical and mathematical abilities to diagrams of wheels and gears, and converted these into three-dimensional wooden clock-parts he carved with a knife” (Paragraph 10, Line 2, Benjamin had no further training in order to know that his calculations for the mathematics that were used in the invention in either the clock and Almanacs were to be correct.

When watching this movie, I am hoping that not only kids but also adults as well to understand how a concept of something that was invented so long ago can be changed so immensely in the future to come. Seeing how the clock as come so far from the wooden clock that Benjamin Banneker invented at the age of 22 years old. The wooden clock that was invented by Benjamin Banneker is completely different now a days due to the technology that has advanced since then clearly seeing as things such as the internet and cellular phones did not exist when Benjamin Banneker was alive meaning that the times have changed in that sense. The Wooden clock and it was made in the process by making a movie about the entirety of it, will spark the interest in many people that have interests in such things as mathematical and mechanical topics that were similar to what Banneker was going through at the time of inventing the wooden clock. “Building this clock seems to have brought Banneker some fame in the local community in which he lived, and he quickly acquired a reputation for skill in making and solving mathematical puzzles” (Paragraph 3 Line 3

When thinking about themes that people should take away from the movie that would be produced about the life of Benjamin Banneker and the inventions that were created by him are that even though he had no education he still was able to invent things that were very important in his time, no matter what skin color you have no one can stop you from living your full potential, another theme being that you cannot give up on yourself and the things that interest you even if you did not grow up with the greatest background. When discussing the first theme that was listed above, you can talk about the only education that Benjamin Banneker received was from his grandmother who only received a short education herself. “His grandmother, an Irish-born former indentured servant, taught him how to read and write, and Benjamin continued his studies alongside both white and black classmates at a one-room school nearby” ( Paragraph 4 Line 2 The second theme being based off how in his times, people that share the same skin tone as Benjamin Banneker were not always treated the best due to the fact that in that time there was slaves that were owned by the white citizens in that area. “ Benjamin Banneker, a free African American man living in a slave state in the 18th century, never knew the weight of iron shackles or the crack of an overseer’s whip” (Paragraph 1, Line 1, Benjamin’s family were either slaves, seeing as Benjamin’s father was a slave but was given him freedom before becoming a farmer while his mother was married his father taking his surname after marriage. “Benjamin Banneker’s father, Robert, had been a slave who had been given his freedom and was a farmer, while his mother was Mary Banneky” (Paragraph 1, Line 1

Works Cited

  1. “Benjamin Banneker.” Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806). Accessed October 17, 2019.
  2. Benjamin Banneker. Accessed October 17, 2019.
  3. “Benjamin Banneker.” PBS. Public Broadcasting Service. Accessed October 17, 2019.
  4. “Benjamin Banneker.” PBS. Public Broadcasting Service. Accessed October 17, 2019.
  5. “Benjamin Banneker.” WHHA (en-US). Accessed October 17, 2019.
  6. “Benjamin Banneker.” Benjamin Banneker: Invented America’s First Clock. Accessed October 17, 2019.

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Importance of Benjamin Banneker for Our Society: Opinion Essay and Film Proposal. (2022, July 14). Edubirdie. Retrieved March 30, 2023, from
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Importance of Benjamin Banneker for Our Society: Opinion Essay and Film Proposal. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 30 Mar. 2023].
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