Reel Racism: Confronting Hollywood's Construction of Afro-American Culture goes beyond reflection theories of the media to examine cinema's active participation in the operations of racism --a complex process rooted in the dynamics of representation. Written for undergraduates and graduate students of film studies and philosophy, Reel Racism focuses on methods and frameworks that analyze films for their production of meaning and how those meanings participate in a broader process of justifying, naturalizing, or legitimizing difference, privilege, and violence based on race. In addition to analyzing how the process of racism is articulated in specific films, Reel Racism examines how specific meanings can resist their function of ideological containment, and instead, offer a perspective of a more collective, egalitarian social system-- one that transcends the discourse of race.
Of Racism and Representation -- Introduction: Revisiting Racism and Cinema -- The Birth of a (Racist) Nation(al) Cinema -- Cinema and the Maintenance of Privilege -- The Gods Must Be Crazy (Privileged, but Crazy) -- Driving Miss Daisy (Because She’s White and I’m Not!) -- Mississippi (and History) Burning -- Confronting Racism and Representation -- A World Apart (from the World of Privilege) -- School Daze and the Politics of Appropriation -- Do the Right Thing: Style as Confrontation -- Daughters of the Dust and the Figurative as Mode of Resistance -- The Great White Man of Lambarene and the Limits of Representation -- Epilogue: Racism, Representation, and the Role of Theory