In Chicago, they were talking about "Haley's comet." To Atlanta TV Executive Neil Kuvin, it was "Super Bowl every night." In New York, Executive Director Vernon Jordan of the National Urban League called it "the single most spectacular educational experience in race relations in America."

What they were talking about was ABC's epic dramatization of Alex Haley's book Roots. For eight consecutive nights, tens of millions of Americans were riveted by Haley's story of his family's passage from an ancestral home in Africa to slavery in America...

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