First lady Michelle Obama speaks during an interactive student workshop with the cast and crew of the film Beasts of the Southern Wild at the State Dining Room of the White House February 13, 2013 in Washington, DC.*First lady Michelle Obama gave her word about “42,” a film based on Jackie Robinson’s life and career, highlighting the racial barriers the athlete and role model took on boldly.

She said to the Associated Press, “How on Earth did (the Robinsons) live through that? How did they do it? How did they endure the taunts and the bigotry for all of that time?”

During a workshop for a group of high school and college students who saw the film at the White House theater, she shared her thoughts, encouraging discussion about racism and eliminating discrimination.

“I can say with all sincerity that it was truly powerful for us,” she said. “We walked away from that just visibly, physically moved by the experience of the movie, of the story,” and the “raw emotion” they felt afterward.

Reflecting on the major differences between the time Jackie grew up and modern times, the first lady was “struck by how far removed that way of life seems today.”

“You can’t imagine the baseball league not being integrated. There are no more “Whites Only” signs posted anywhere in this country. Although it still happens, it is far less acceptable for someone to yell out a racial slur while you’re walking down the street,” she told the students. “That kind of prejudice is simply just not something that can happen in the light of day today.”