ELLIS ISLAND: THE MAKING OF A MASTER RACE IN AMERICA

By Robert TUTAK

TUTAK FILMS - as PROD

Documentary - Completed 2017

The faces of immigrants to the U. S. changed over the years. The fear of them, fear of the other, never has. First, it was the Chinese, the Irish, the Slavs, the Jews, and the Italians. Now it is the Muslims and the Mexicans.

    • Year of production
    • 2017
    • Genres
    • Documentary
    • Countries
    • USA
    • Languages
    • ENGLISH
    • Budget
    • 0 - 0.3 M$
    • Duration
    • 70 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Robert TUTAK
    • Producer(s)
    • Robert TUTAK (TUTAK FILMS)
    • Synopsis
    • ELLIS ISLAND investigates the influence of American eugenics and nativism on the U.S. immigration policies at the turn of the 20th century. It reconstructs the Inspection Line: medical and mental examination of immigrants, and speaks of the eugenicists’ social agenda of race purification and creation of a Master Race through selection, sterilisation, and elimination of the “inferior stock.”

      The story spans from the end of the 19th century to the present: from Darwin and Galton (creator of eugenics) through the American eugenicists, to Hitler, to Trump. It is narrated by a villager from a poverty stricken Polish village in Galicia, Austria, who journeyed to America in hope of a better life only to be excluded and deported.

      The visual fabric of the film is woven of 800 archival photographs, which work in counterpoint to the textual source materials: eugenics papers and governmental documents of the time.
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