The Great Debaters

Factual error: When challenged by Henry Lowe, Professor Tolson begins to recite the infamous William Lynch speech. However, the speech was proved to be a hoax that was actually written in the 1990s. No text could have existed at the time of this scene for Tolson to quote.

Character mistake: The definition of Satyagraha that Wilson, the butler at Harvard, gives is partially correct. Wilson defines it as "truth and fairness." A quick look at Wikipedia defines Satyagraha as "holding the truth." The definition from the online Merriam-Webster dictionary could be loosely described as "persistence of truth." (01:38:30)

James Farmer Jr.: We do what we have to do in order to do what we want to do.

Samantha: James, you know I value your friendship.
James Farmer Jr.: How can you value something you never had?
Samantha: So... we were never friends?
James Farmer Jr.: Maybe I don't want to be just your friend. Maybe it hurts me to be just your friend.

Henry Lowe: A brilliant young woman I know was asked once to support her argument in favor of social welfare. She named the most powerful source imaginable: the look in a mother's face when she cannot feed her children. Can you look that hungry child in the eyes? See the blood on his feet from working barefoot in the cotton fields. Or do you ask his baby sister with her belly swollen from hunger if she cares about her daddy's work ethics?

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