Final post - Whites of their Eyes

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The most influential reading of the semester for me was Stuart Hall's "The Whites of Their Eyes: Racist Ideologies and the Media." The striking part was the three examples of common base-images for minority characters in TV and film: the slave figure, the native, and the clown or entertainer. These images and the characteristics attributed to them are so frequent that they almost seem like the default character form to me. I realized that I adopted all the characteristics for that character at the slightest hint or first display of one of the characteristics. It is interesting to take step back and think about how those stereotypes came to be and how often they are reinforced by images in the media. Antoine Dodson, from the viral youtube clip Bed Intruder News Story/Bed Intruder Song (Hide ya kids, hide ya wife) was seen through the double vision of the white eye. Sure, what he was saying was noble, defending his sister who was the victim of an attempted sexual assault, but the song has over 118 million views because he plays the role of entertainer or clown from what he says and the way he says it in defense of his sister.

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Ya the Antoine Dodson stuff was kind of a weird situation, where Dodson was clowning but it was surrounded by a potentially terrible situation. He was acting of his own will during that interview, but there's some characterizations of black and gay men going on in how people perceived the interview and why it's popular.

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This page contains a single entry by JD published on December 10, 2013 12:34 PM.

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