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Media Lending Library

Humanities Tennessee's Media Lending Library consists of a wide range of award-winning, humanities-based documentaries largely funded by the Southern Humanities Media Fund. Videos in the collection are available free of charge to non-profits, schools, and community groups across the state, and do not require a grant application.

Guidelines & Instructions

The uses for Humanities Tennessee's documentaries are as varied as the subject matter of the videos themselves. Yet, while the topics are as wide-ranging as literature, labor strikes, and politics, they all share the theme of Southern history and culture, making them suitable for an in-depth, multifaceted series of film discussion programs for public audiences.

With items from our video library, a local library may explore the historical context of Southern literature; a county historical society may analyze regional politics of the mid-twentieth century; and a K–12 teacher may use a series of our documentaries to develop a curriculum plan centered on the Civil Rights Movement.

A perennial draw for audiences, public documentary screenings can attract community members to an organization's programming and thoroughly enrich community life in the process. Humanities Tennessee's video documentaries can offer audiences a deeper understanding of the human experience as expressed in the medium of film and in the context of Southern history and culture.

Using the Media Lending Library

Use of the documentary films in our Media Lending Library is open to any non-profit organization in Tennessee including government agencies and K–12 teachers. All requests are handled on a first come, first served basis, and must be received by our staff at least three weeks in advance of the screening date. Requesting a video from the Media Lending Library is simple and is explained below.

  1. After selecting a title from our online Media Lending Library Catalog, complete and submit the online request form at least three weeks prior to your screening date. A separate form is required for each item requested.
  2. Humanities Tennessee will mail the requested material no later than ten business days before your event. We will contact you if your selection is not available.
  3. When you receive the video, view it in advance of the public screening to confirm that it was not damaged en route. K–12 teachers are required to preview videos before showing them to persons under the age of eighteen years.
  4. Publicize the program widely in your community through press releases, public service announcements, posters, flyers, newsletters, and personal contacts. Emphasize that the program is free of charge and acknowledge Humanities Tennessee in all publicity materials.
  5. At the beginning of the screening, introduce the documentary and acknowledge Humanities Tennessee. After the program, complete the evaluation form enclosed with the video and return it along with the video to Humanities Tennessee. The evaluation requires audience information and cost-sharing figures.
  6. Each video must have a return shipping postmark date no later than three days following the screening.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact our office. We are happy to discuss the documentaries and programming possibilities. You may contact Paul McCoy at 615-770-0006, ext. 8017, or email

Please see the online request form.

Featured Media Library

This program frames a compelling look at the moral implications of media representation with the 1967 murder of a filmmaker by a local man on whose property filming took place. In examining a range of views regarding the tragic incident, the program raises questions about the role of filmmakers, the relationship of film subjects to the makers and the medium.