New Documentary on Racial Wealth Gap Screened in Chicago

Bruce Orenstein visited Chicago recently to screen his latest documentary, The Color Tax.

On February 8, filmmaker and Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity Artist-in-Residence Bruce Orenstein presented The Color Tax: Origins of the Modern Day Racial Wealth Gap at the Illinois Institute of Technology. The forty-minute film, one of five episodes that Orenstein is producing as part of his Shame of Chicago project on the history of housing segregation there, tells the story of how a long-standing system of predatory home contract sales stole hard-earned wealth from the pockets of Chicago’s Black families, denying these families the equity-building mortgages that were given to their White counterparts.

The event was sponsored by the Chicago Southside Film Festival.


Days later, Orenstein presented a screening at Providence Bank and Trust in Chicago. In addition to Orenstein and community leaders, the panel discussion that followed featured Dr. Clinton Boyd, Jr., who is currently a postdoctoral associate at the Cook Center.

Click here to learn more about The Color Tax and the Shame of Chicago project.