divas on screen black women in american film

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Divas On Screen

Author : Mia Mask
ISBN : 9780252091827
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 22. 33 MB
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This insightful study places African American women's stardom in historical and industrial contexts by examining the star personae of five African American women: Dorothy Dandridge, Pam Grier, Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, and Halle Berry. Interpreting each woman's celebrity as predicated on a brand of charismatic authority, Mia Mask shows how these female stars have ultimately complicated the conventional discursive practices through which blackness and womanhood have been represented in commercial cinema, independent film, and network television. Mask examines the function of these stars in seminal yet underanalyzed films. She considers Dandridge's status as a sexual commodity in films such as Tamango, revealing the contradictory discourses regarding race and sexuality in segregation-era American culture. Grier's feminist-camp performances in sexploitation pictures Women in Cages and The Big Doll House and her subsequent blaxploitation vehicles Coffy and Foxy Brown highlight a similar tension between representing African American women as both objectified stereotypes and powerful, self-defining icons. Mask reads Goldberg's transforming habits in Sister Act and The Associate as representative of her unruly comedic routines, while Winfrey's daily television performance as self-made, self-help guru echoes Horatio Alger narratives of success. Finally, Mask analyzes Berry's meteoric success by acknowledging the ways in which Dandridge's career made Berry's possible.

Divas On Screen

Author : Mia Mask
ISBN : 9780252034220
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 21. 33 MB
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Accessible, theoretical readings of popular African American women film icons

Contemporary Black American Cinema

Author : Mia Mask
ISBN : 9781136308024
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 76. 72 MB
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Contemporary Black American Cinema offers a fresh collection of essays on African American film, media, and visual culture in the era of global multiculturalism. Integrating theory, history, and criticism, the contributing authors deftly connect interdisciplinary perspectives from American studies, cinema studies, cultural studies, political science, media studies, and Queer theory. This multidisciplinary methodology expands the discursive and interpretive registers of film analysis. From Paul Robeson’s and Sidney Poitier’s star vehicles to Lee Daniels’s directorial forays, these essays address the career legacies of film stars, examine various iterations of Blaxploitation and animation, question the comedic politics of "fat suit" films, and celebrate the innovation of avant-garde and experimental cinema.

Poitier Revisited

Author : Ian Gregory Strachan
ISBN : 9781623562977
Genre : Art
File Size : 82. 55 MB
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Sidney Poitier remains one of the most recognizable black men in the world. Widely celebrated but at times criticized for the roles he played during a career that spanned 60 years, there can be no comprehensive discussion of black men in American film, and no serious analysis of 20th century American film history that excludes him. Poitier Revisited offers a fresh interrogation of the social, cultural and political significance of the Poitier oeuvre. The contributions explore the broad spectrum of critical issues summoned up by Poitier's iconic work as actor, director and filmmaker. Despite his stature, Poitier has actually been under-examined in film criticism generally. This work reconsiders his pivotal role in film and American race relations, by arguing persuasively, that even in this supposedly 'post-racial' moment of Barack Obama, the struggles, aspirations, anxieties, and tensions Poitier's films explored are every bit as relevant today as when they were first made.

Documenting The Black Experience

Author : Novotny Lawrence
ISBN : 9780786472673
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 75. 97 MB
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"Bridging the gap between often ignored black history and documentary film Novotny Lawrence brings together insightful articles from academics and practicing filmmakers. An overdue and much-needed anthology for the fields of documentary and black studies."--Christine Acham, University of Southern California "Lawrence presents a collection of straightforward essays on non-narrative cinema that documents pivotal moments in the African American struggle for civil rights. From its account of The Scottsboro Boys' case to the discussion of Jack Johnson in Unforgivable Blackness, to the analysis of Shirley Clarke's avant-garde character study, A Portrait of Jason, this volume calls attention to several important, but lesser known, films made in the documentary tradition. It will make a useful addition to classrooms and everyday conversations in which we try to reconstruct the tragedy and trials faced by historical subjects like Emmett Till and Dorothy Dandridge, or the difficulties faced by young people growing up in violent neighborhoods."--Mia Mask, Vassar College, author of Divas on Screen: Black Women in American Film History taught at the elementary, middle, high school and even college levels often excludes significant events from African American history, such as the murder of Emmett Till or the murder of four black girls by the Ku Klux Klan in the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham. Such events are integral parts of history that continue to inform America's racial politics. Their exclusion is a problem that this work addresses by bringing more visibility to documentary films focusing on the events. Books treating the history of documentary films follow a similar pattern, omitting the efforts of filmmakers who have continued to focus on African American history. This book works to make documentary discourse more complete, bringing attention to films that cover the African American experience in four areas--civil rights, sports, electronic media, and the contemporary black struggle--demonstrating how the issues continue to inform America's racial politics.

Brown Sugar

Author : Donald Bogle
ISBN : 0826416756
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 88. 75 MB
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With a wink or a nod, a shake of their shoulders or hips, America's "Dark Divas," "Sepia Sirens," "Black Beauties" have acted out fantastic stories full of whispers and secrets. They have played with the myths, created legends, turned the social order topsy-turvy. One thing is certain: in 20th- and 21st-century America, an impressive lineup of African American women have dazzled and delighted the world with their energy and style. Who are these great women of the stage and screen? the singers, dancers, comediennes, actresses? In this groundbreaking book, Donald Bogle narrates a sweeping history and describes a remarkable tradition that was largely unknown or not understood - or simply unacknowledged. Each of the women in Brown Sugar has a perfected public personality uniquely her own - Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Ethel Waters, Josephine Baker, Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, Fredi Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, Katherine Dunham, Marian Anderson, Moms Mabley, Eartha Kitt, Dorothy Dandridge, Leontyne Price, Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin, Cicely Tyson, Tina Turner, Donna Summer, Whitney Houston, Whoopi Goldberg, Angela Bassett, Oprah Winfrey, Mariah Carey, Halle Berry, Queen Latifah, Lauryn Hill, Mary J. Blige, Faith Evans, Lil' Kim, Alicia Keyes, Beyoncé Knowles, and many others. Diva style has sometimes been part put-on, part come-on, part camp, and part reflection of an authentic African American cultural tradition. Haughtiness, control, shrewdness, energy, extravagance, optimism, and humor are all a part of it. "Dazzle your audience," they seemed to say, "but never lose your cool." Yet, there are often the tears behind the mask, the hideous realities of racism and exploitation, the pain hiding behind the smile, the concealed anxieties, private lives in ruins: all the obstacles and pressures involved in making it to the top. Always, however, there is the redemption through these women's art. In these pages are the incandescent women who have lit up Broadway and movie screens; turned clubs, cafés, concert halls, and televisions aglow with their particular brand of black magic; sold millions of cds and dvds; and are the subjects of endless fascination in the tabloids and on the Internet. Onstage and off, the lives of these captivating women, their follies and fortunes, trials, tragedies, transformations, and triumphs, their inimitable style, have become a cherished part of our own.

Hollywood Divas Indie Queens And Tv Heroines

Author : Susanne Kord
ISBN : 0742537099
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 76. 96 MB
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Hollywood Divas, Indie Queens, and TV Heroines offers an entertaining and critical look at the representation of women in recent movies. Written in a refreshingly accessible style, the book analyzes over thirty box-office hits. The authors explore the screen personae of top stars such as Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock, Meg Ryan, and Renee Zellweger, as well as independent movie queens like Parker Posey and TV heroines like Sarah Michelle Gellar of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. A must-read book for all film buffs who are tired of the mixed gender messages of mainstream culture."

Baad Bitches And Sassy Supermamas

Author : Stephane Dunn
ISBN : 0252091043
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 66. 93 MB
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This lively study unpacks the intersecting racial, sexual, and gender politics underlying the representations of racialized bodies, masculinities, and femininities in early 1970s black action films, with particular focus on the representation of black femininity. Stephane Dunn explores the typical, sexualized, subordinate positioning of women in low-budget blaxploitation action narratives as well as more seriously radical films like Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song and The Spook Who Sat by the Door, in which black women are typically portrayed as trifling "bitches" compared to the supermacho black male heroes. The terms "baad bitches" and "sassy supermamas" signal the reversal of this positioning with the emergence of supermama heroines in the few black action films in the early 1970s that featured self-assured, empowered, and tough (or "baad") black women as protagonists: Cleopatra Jones, Coffy, and Foxy Brown. Dunn offers close examination of a distinct moment in the history of African American representation in popular cinema, tracing its emergence out of a radical political era, influenced especially by the Black Power movement and feminism. "Baad Bitches" and Sassy Supermamas also engages blaxploitation's impact and lingering aura in contemporary hip-hop culture as suggested by its disturbing gender politics and the "baad bitch daughters" of Foxy Brown and Cleopatra Jones, rappers Lil' Kim and Foxy Brown.

Black Masculinity And The Cinema Of Policing

Author : Jared Sexton
ISBN : 9783319661704
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 59. 79 MB
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This book offers a critical survey of film and media representations of black masculinity in the early twenty-first-century United States, between President George W. Bush’s 2001 announcement of the War on Terror and President Barack Obama’s 2009 acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize. It argues that images of black masculine authority have become increasingly important to the legitimization of contemporary policing and its leading role in the maintenance of an antiblack social order forged by racial slavery and segregation. It examines a constellation of film and television productions—from Antoine Fuqua’s Training Day to John Lee Hancock’s The Blind Side to Barry Jenkin's Moonlight—to illuminate the contradictory dynamics at work in attempts to reconcile the promotion of black male patriarchal empowerment and the preservation of gendered antiblackness within political and popular culture.

The Encyclopedia Of Racism In American Films

Author : Salvador Jimenez Murguía
ISBN : 9781442269064
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 26. 79 MB
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From D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation in 1915 to the recent Get Out, audiences and critics alike have responded to racism in motion pictures for more than a century. Whether subtle or blatant, racially biased images and narratives erase minorities, perpetuate stereotypes, and keep alive practices of discrimination and marginalization. Even in the 21st century, the American film industry is not “color blind,” evidenced by films such as Babel (2006), A Better Life, (2011), and 12 Years a Slave (2013). The Encyclopedia of Racism in American Film documents one facet of racism in the film industry, wherein historically underrepresented peoples are misrepresented—through a lack of roles for actors of color, stereotyping, negative associations, and an absence of rich, nuanced characters. Offering insights and analysis from over seventy scholars, critics, and activists, the volume highlights issues such as: Hollywood’s diversity crisis White Savior films Magic Negro tropes The disconnect between screen images and lived realities of African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asians A companion to the ever-growing field of race studies, this volume opens up a critical dialogue on an always timely issue. The Encyclopedia of Racism in American Film will appeal to scholars of cinema, race and ethnicity studies, and cultural history.

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