In the critical essays collected in Black Looks, bell hooks interrogates old narratives and argues for alternative ways to look at blackness, black subjectivity, and whiteness. Her focus is on spectatorship—in particular, the way blackness and black people are experienced in literature, music, television, and especially film—and her aim is to create a radical intervention into the way we talk about race and representation. As she describes: "the essays in Black Looks are meant to challenge and unsettle, to disrupt and subvert." As students, scholars, activists, intellectuals, and any other readers who have engaged with the book since its original release in 1992 can attest, that's exactly what these pieces do.
Table of Contents
Preface to the New Edition Introduction 1. Loving Blackness as Political Resistance 2. Eating the Other 3. Revolutionary Black Women 4. Selling Hot Pussy 5. A Feminist Challenge 6. Reconstructing Black Masculinity 7. The Oppositional Gaze 8. Micheaux's Films 9. Is Paris Burning? 10. Madonna 11. Representations of Whiteness 12. Revolutionary "Renegades"
A cultural critic, an intellectual, and a feminist writer, bell hooks is best known for classic books including Ain’t I a Woman, Bone Black, All About Love, Rock My Soul, Belonging, We Real Cool, Where We Stand, Teaching to Transgress, Teaching Community, Outlaw Culture, and Reel to Real. hooks is Distinguished Professor in Residence in Appalachian Studies at Berea College, and resides in her home state of Kentucky.
Praise for the book:
"This latest collection from hooks contains a dozen recent essays on the representation of the African American experience, an area in which, she argues convincingly, little progress has been made. . . . Imbued with hooks's theoretical rigor, intellectual integrity, breadth of knowledge and passion, this book is a necessary read for anyone concerned with race in America." —Publishers Weekly (1999)
"hooks’s essays raise many of the most significant debates within black cultural life of recent times, such as relations between the sexes and the dangers of racial essentialism inherent in all forms of black nationalism. . . . She casts a fresh perspective on aspects of black women’s writing and black feminist theorising…" —Sally Keenan, Journal of American Studies (1995)