Race in Cinema

The Brutal Black Buck

Barbaric blacks out to raise havoc; Bif "bad, blacks oversexed and savage, violent and frenzied as they lust for white flesh"; the buck plays out the fear that every black man longs for a white woman

Colorblind Racism

The ideology that explains contemporary racial inequality as the outcome of nonracial dynamics, as the product of market dynamics, naturally occurring phenomena, and blacks imputed cultural limitations

The Tom

The Good negro who always keeps the faith, never turns against his "white mess", and remains hearty, submissive, stoic, generous, selfless, and kind

W.E.D. Dubois

American sociologist, historian, and civil rights activist; Wrote "The souls of Black Folk" was his first and arguably most famous work; Black Reconstruction in America challenged the predominant idea that blacks were to blame for the failures of Reconstr

Mass Incarceration

refers not only to the criminal justice system but also to the larger web of laws, rules, policies, and customs that control those labeled criminals both in and out of prison

4 frames of Colorblind Racism

Abstract Liberalism, Naturalization, Cultural Racism, Minimization of Racism


a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing

The Coon

Amusing black buffoon

The Mammy

big, overweight, cantankerous woman who usually takes care of the white children. She is desexualized, a fabrication that ensures that the figure is not a threat to hegemoic structures of power despite the face that she controlled black men

The Dreamers/The Dream

The Dream: The (White american Dream) Dream thrives on generalization, on limiting the number of possible questions The Dreamers: People who usually think they are white and believe in the american dream and the ideology of meritocracy

The great migration

1.8 million blacks migrated between 910 and 1940 from the south to the North and West.

Black Exceptionalism

This ensures that institutions and systems cannot appear as racist despite the fact that blacks need to negotiate the worldview by negating these representations

Emancipation Proclamation

Abraham Lincoln which declared enslaved residing in the rebelling confederate states to be free: Southern planters attempted to hide news about this proclamation from their slaves


evokes a hegemonic cultural logic that consciously and unconsciously reinforces white attitudes, beliefs, and positions as the dominant, unquestioned way of life

Welfare Queen

A pejorative phrase used to describe someone, usually black, who collects excessive welfare payments through fraud or manipulation

Blaxploitation Films

Blaxploitation films were originally made specifically for an urban black audience, but the genre's audience appeal soon broadened across racial and ethnic lines once Hollywood realized the potential profit of expanding the audiences of blaxpoitation film

The Tragic Mulatto

is an archetypical mixed-race person (a "mulatto"), who is assumed to be sad, or even suicidal, because they fail to completely fit in the "white world" or the "black world


a form of theatrical make-up used predominantly by non-black performers to represent a black person

Racial Ideology

denoting or relating to the division of the human species into races on grounds of physical characteristics , characteristic of any such group

Double Consciousness

a sense of always looking at one's self through the eyes of others, of measuring one's soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity


simple minded, childish, happy slave

13th Amendment

December 1865 it was ratified; Prohibited slavery throughout the United States


Negro child: harmless little screwball creation whose eyes pooped out, whose hair stood on end, and whose antics were pleasant and diverting

Birth of a nation


Anti racism

includes beliefs, actions, movements, and policies adopted or developed to oppose racism.

third cinema

Latin american film movement which decries neocolonialism, the capitalist system, and the Hollywood model of cinema as mere entertainment to make money.

visual sovereignty

the creative self-representation of Native American visual artists (performance art, studio art, internet media, and the televisual)

virtual reservation

the space in which native americans create and contest self images and where these images collide with a mass mediated representations of indians by the dominant culture can be thought of as a visual reservation

noble savage

Idealized picture of "natures gentleman": this character was deemed worthy because it was unspoiled by material developments and the trappings of modernity. It was often billed as a nonwhite, indigenous, and exotic savage that the white explore would disc


Represents a deeply religious and mysterious character; medicine men.healers with sacred knowledge

be twice as good

all my life id hear people tell their black boys and girls to "be twice as good" which is to say " accept half as much

Convict Leasing

was a system of penal labor practiced in the Southern United States. Convict leasing provided prisoner labor to private parties, such as plantation owners and corporations


The cultural and ideological work of playing indian both on-screen and off-screen; Native actives became human shields to absorb, deflect, redirect, and placate the fantasies projected on these "celluloid Indians" by the dominant culture



Fourth Cinema

these films are often screened for home communities before their national and international release

Sherman Alexie

Native American poet, novelist, performer and filmmaker; challenges hegemonic and stereotypical ages of American indians through portraying a complex, humanizing, and contemporary image of american indians

James Young Deer


The expected Idea


The Vanishing American

the notion that indians were doomed to disappear, either through assimilation into white culture or through the attrition of warfare and disease

Black Codes

discriminatory criminal laws that created new criminal offenses such as "vagrancy" and "loitering". This led to the mass arrest and incarceration of black people


the process whereby a minority group gradually adapts to the customs and attitudes of the prevailing culture and customs.


evaluation of other cultures according to preconceptions originating in the standards and customs of one's own culture.

Iron Eyes Cody

Italian-American actor. He portrayed Native Americans in Hollywood films



Chief Buffalo Child Longlance



work in the service of their community, albeit in often clumsy, violent, outlier, sexualized, or humorous ways


genre films and they way they represented indians


Savage warrior, heroic and noble warrior/hunter, depicted as stoic and in touch with nature, peace-long but will to fight if necessary

DeMille Indians

In 1940, A petition sought to legalize a technologically defines identity while seemingly making no specific land claims and involving no treaty rights.

Terror Lynchings

Between the Civil War and WWII, thousands of AA were lynched. Sparked the mass migration of millions of black people from the south into urban ghettos in the north and west.

Abstract Liberalism

using ideas associated with political liberalism ( equal opportunity," the idea that force should not be used to achieve social policy), and economic liberalism is an abstract manner to explain racial matters


allows whites to explain away racial phenomena by suggesting they are natural occurrences; "thats the way it is

Cultural Racism

a frame the relies on culturally based arguments such as "Mexicans do not put much emphasis on education" or "blacks have to many babies" to explain the standing of minorities in society

Minimization of Racism

a frame that suggests discrimination is no longer a central factor affecting minorities life changes