Analysis of The Minstrel Shows. Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide. An abstract is required. Theresa Bivens Soc 416 Criminal Justice and Race Dr.C. Kowalchyk Question #2 . Alexander quotes a gay activist “ Only by embracing the stigma itself can on neutralize the sting and make it laughable “ According to Alexander , how does this apply to minstrel shows and gangster rap?
The Minstrel shows are acts that are acted out in clownish ways highlighting the bad stereotypes of African American.
According to Alexander “Only embracing the stigma itself can neutralize the sting and make it laughable”. The book shows that although the Minstrel shows were flat out racist and blacks knew it was meant to be degrading to them, they made up a huge part of the audience. They would go to the shows and laugh at the mockery being displayed of the culture of black slaves. They felt seeing this being acted out on a stage by black people illustrated a form of success. It opened doors for them into show business and to make money. So by embracing The Minstrel Show and being able to laugh at the fact that it was meant to be negative towards African American people suppressed the sting and made it laughable.
“Gangsta Rap” bears the brunt of the stigma that is labeled a criminalize culture. Although rap music didn’t start out as harsh as it is portrayed today. Society has labeled rap music visibility with a gangster life due to the “War on Drug”. When rappers embrace the stigma of being a rapper they inherit the dis-identifier of a Gangsta Rap while trying to portray a positive character.
Alexander talks about how the colored people have permanently become second-class citizens in their own countries, their exploitation is being carried out on a daily basis and there are others trying to make economic gain through all this.
The Minstrel shows are a great source of highlighting how the colored people are being exploited. The bad stereotypes come to light through the Minstrel shows.
The blacks took part in these shows actively so as to prove a point. they wanted the others to know that it is a form of success for them. This also turned out to be a profitable plot for them, the colored people started making money through all this and it was all well and good. The shows are laughable because they are satire in nature aimed at bringing about a reform in our society and the way we perceive colored people.
“The clock has been turned back on racial progress in America, though scarcely anyone seems to notice. All eyes are fixed on people like Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey who have defied the odds and achieved great power, wealth and fame”(The New Jim Crow)
The gangsta rap is no different, the rappers often portray the crime world in their videos and again some of them do so as a form of satire to bring about a positive change in the society but it is perceived by the viewers very differently. Alexander tries to juxtapose The Minstrel shows and gangsta rap in an attempt to let the society know that the colored people deserve better than what they currently have, they deserve respect and equality in the society.