Taking of South Central…Philadelphia, The

Produced by: 
Odunde with Scribe Video Center

Individual Film Price:

Higher Education Institutions & Government Agency DVD | $49.95
K-12 & Public Libraries DVD | $49.95
Home Video DVD License – Restrictions Apply | $5.95



Precious Places Compilation Price:

This video is available for purchase as part of a Precious Places Community History Project Vol.1 compilation DVD.
Higher Education Institutions & Government Agency DVD | $139.00
K-12 & Public Libraries DVD | $79.00
Home Video DVD License – Restrictions Apply | $20.00



Scribe Video Center Program:

The Precious Places Community History Project is a community oral history project inviting members of the Philadelphia region's many neighborhoods to document the buildings, public spaces, parks, landmarks and other sites that hold the memories of our communities and define where we live. Precious Places teaches the video production process to participating groups, fostering projects authored by those who intimately know the featured neighborhoods.


Videomaking Consultant: Tina Morton
Humanities Consultant: Jeff Maskovsky
Post Production: Tina Morton


Film Story:

Once “South Philly,” the area along South Street is now “Center City.” As longtime residents around the 2100 block can attest, gentrification has besieged this close-knit neighborhood that is regionally famous for Odunde, an annual African street festival. South Street is located just blocks from Center City's skyscrapers, and with real estate values rising, longtime residents in this neighborhood increasingly face displacement as the borders of Center City march ever southward. It is not the first time that the specter of displacement has arisen here: as residents remember, the Crosstown Expressway threatened thousands of homes in the area until the 1970s. The Taking of South Central...Philadelphia consciously places South Street's predicament in a national context. "Gentrification is like an epidemic," says the narrator. "People are being displaced from Harlem, San Francisco, Chicago, Detroit... where will working class people live?" The video features longtime residents such as Odunde founder Lois A Fernandez, and Lilly Gertrude Capps Venning-Dickerson, known locally as "Miss Buzzy," a 102-year resident of the neighborhood. With the community changing around them, neighbors are increasingly contemplating the future of this vital section of the city that to them will always be South Philadelphia.


April 9, 2013 | “Film Screening: “My Brooklyn” with director Kelly Anderson,” Next City
March 24, 2014 | “Telling neighborhood stories” by Kathryn Smith Pyle, Broad Street Review
April 15, 2014 | “Documentary Film and Gentrification” by Kathryn Pyle, Philanthropy News Digest

Public Screenings, Broadcasts and Festivals: 
February 7, 2007 | Broadcast on WHYY-TV


Film Stills: