on the real side a history of african american comedy

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On The Real Side

Author : Mel Watkins
ISBN : 9781569767603
Genre : Humor
File Size : 20. 88 MB
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This comprehensive history of black humor sets it in the context of American popular culture. Blackface minstrelsy, Stepin Fetchit, and the Amos 'n' Andy show presented a distorted picture of African Americans; this book contrasts this image with the authentic underground humor of African Americans found in folktales, race records, and all-black shows and films. After generations of stereotypes, the underground humor finally emerged before the American public with Richard Pryor in the 1970s. But Pryor was not the first popular comic to present authentically black humor. Watkins offers surprising reassessments of such seminal figures as Fetchit, Bert Williams, Moms Mabley, and Redd Foxx, looking at how they paved the way for contemporary comics such as Whoopi Goldberg, Eddie Murphy, and Bill Cosby.

On The Real Side

Author : Mel Watkins
ISBN : UOM:39015032535604
Genre : Humor
File Size : 68. 71 MB
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A history of African-American humor reassesses traditional stereotypes and offers a new appreciation of the performers

Whiting Up

Author : Marvin McAllister
ISBN : 9780807869062
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 68. 35 MB
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In the early 1890s, black performer Bob Cole turned blackface minstrelsy on its head with his nationally recognized whiteface creation, a character he called Willie Wayside. Just over a century later, hiphop star Busta Rhymes performed a whiteface supercop in his hit music video "Dangerous." In this sweeping work, Marvin McAllister explores the enduring tradition of "whiting up," in which African American actors, comics, musicians, and even everyday people have studied and assumed white racial identities. Not to be confused with racial "passing" or derogatory notions of "acting white," whiting up is a deliberate performance strategy designed to challenge America's racial and political hierarchies by transferring supposed markers of whiteness to black bodies--creating unexpected intercultural alliances even as it sharply critiques racial stereotypes. Along with conventional theater, McAllister considers a variety of other live performance modes, including weekly promenading rituals, antebellum cakewalks, solo performance, and standup comedy. For over three centuries, whiting up as allowed African American artists to appropriate white cultural production, fashion new black identities through these "white" forms, and advance our collective ability to locate ourselves in others.

Laughing Mad

Author : Bambi Haggins
ISBN : 0813539854
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 73. 96 MB
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Prior to the civil rights movement, comedians performed for audiences that were clearly delineated by race. Black comedians performed for black audiences and white comedians performed for whites. Yet during the past forty-five years, black comics have become progressively more central to mainstream culture. In Laughing Mad, Bambi Haggins looks at how this transition occurred in a variety of media and shows how this integration has paved the way for black comedians and their audiences to affect each other. Historically, African American performers have been able to use comedy as a pedagogic tool, interjecting astute observations about race relations while the audience is laughing. And yet, Haggins makes the convincing argument that the potential of African American comedy remains fundamentally unfulfilled as the performance of blackness continues to be made culturally digestible for mass consumption. Rather than presenting biographies of individual performers, Haggins focuses on the ways in which the comic persona is constructed and changes across media, from stand-up, to the small screen, to film. She examines the comic televisual and cinematic personae of Dick Gregory, Bill Cosby, Flip Wilson, and Richard Pryor and considers how these figures set the stage for black comedy in the next four decades. She reads Eddie Murphy and Chris Rock as emblematic of the first and second waves of postcivil rights era African American comedy, and she looks at the socio-cultural politics of Whoopi Goldbergs comic persona through the lens of gender and crossover. Laughing Mad also explores how the comedy of Dave Chappelle speaks to and for the post-soul generation. A rigorous analytic analysis, this book interrogates notions of identity, within both the African American community and mainstream popular culture. Written in engaging and accessible prose, it is also a book that will travel from the seminar room, to the barbershop, to the kitchen table, allowing readers to experience the sketches, stand-up, and film comedies with all the laughter they deserve.

Stepin Fetchit

Author : Mel Watkins
ISBN : 9780307547507
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 69. 7 MB
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In the late 1920s and '30s Lincoln Perry, aka Stepin Fetchit, was both renowned and reviled for his surrealistic portrayals of the era’s most popular comic stereotype–the lazy, shiftless Negro. Perry was hailed by critic Robert Benchley as “the best actor that the talking movies have produced,” and Mel Watkins’s meticulously researched and sensitive biography reveals the paradoxes of this pioneering actor’s life, from Perry’s tremendous popularity to his money troubles and rowdy offscreen antics. As later generations come to recognize Perry’s prodigious talent and achievements, in Stepin Fetchit, Mel Watkins brilliantly and definitively illuminates the life and times of a legendary figure in American entertainment. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Punchlines

Author : Leon Rappoport
ISBN : 0275987647
Genre : Humor
File Size : 65. 46 MB
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Explores how African Americans, Jews, Asians, and other under-represented groups use comedy to ease and sometimes foster social tensions. This work also examines the heated issue of when and why it's socially permissible to laugh along.

Tim And Tom

Author : Tim Reid
ISBN : 9780226709024
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 28. 73 MB
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As the heady promise of the 1960s sagged under the weight of widespread violence, rioting, and racial unrest, two young men--one black and one white--took to stages across the nation to help Americans confront their racial divide: by laughing at it. Tim and Tom tells the story of that pioneering duo, the first interracial comedy team in the history of show business--and the last. Tim Reid and Tom Dreesen polished their act in the nightclubs of Chicago, then took it on the road, not only in the North, but in the still-simmering South as well, developing routines that even today remain surprisingly frank--and remarkably funny--about race. Most nights, the shock of seeing an integrated comedy team quickly dissipated in uproarious laughter, but on some occasions the audience’s confusion and discomfort led to racist heckling, threats, and even violence. Though Tim and Tom perpetually seemed on the verge of making it big throughout their five years together, they grudgingly came to realize that they were ahead of their time: America was not yet ready to laugh at its own failed promise. Eventually, the grind of the road took its toll, as bitter arguments led to an acrimonious breakup. But the underlying bond of friendship Reid and Dreesen had forged with each groundbreaking joke has endured for decades, while their solo careers delivered the success that had eluded them as a team. By turns revealing, shocking, and riotously funny, Tim and Tom unearths a largely forgotten chapter in the history of comedy.

Furious Cool

Author : David Henry
ISBN : 9781616202712
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 82. 53 MB
Format : PDF
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“Addictively readable . . . Someday, when fewer people know Richard Pryor’s name, Furious Cool will be the best defense against the worst sort of forgetting--the kind that involves who we are now, who we loved once, and why.” —Esquire Richard Pryor was arguably the single most influential performer of the second half of the twentieth century, and certainly he was the most successful black actor/comedian ever. Controversial and somewhat enigmatic during his life, Pryor’s performances opened up a whole new world of possibilities, merging fantasy with angry reality in a way that wasn’t just new--it was theretofore unthinkable. Now, this groundbreaking and revelatory work brings him to life again both as a man and as an artist, providing an in-depth appreciation of his talent and his lasting influence, as well as an insightful examination of the world he lived in and the myriad influences that shaped both his persona and his art. “A testament to [Pryor’s] stature not only as an African-American entertainment idol but also as an American icon . . . The Henrys’ exuberant tribute may well evoke renewed interest in a performance genius who remade the face of American stand-up comedy.” —The New York Times Book Review “A sleek, highly literate biography that places the comic in the pop-cultural context of his times.” —Bloomberg News “Richard Pryor was the most free black man of the twentieth century. He also was a comic genius. This book gives the definitive reasons why he was so free and so sublime.” —Dr. Cornel West “David Henry and Joe Henry have brought Richard Pryor back to pulsating life, affirming both his humanity and his immortality as a comic--and tragic--genius . . . Furious Cool is a fabulous history, alive with fascinating characters.” —The Huffington Post

Who Killed Tiffany Jones

Author : Mavis Kaye
ISBN : 9780061756061
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 52. 80 MB
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There's a $10,000 reward for solving the crime -- It could be yours! The sensational killings that have rocked the seemingly untouchable world of international jet-setters and powerful glitterati appear to be unrelated -- but former police detective Kim Carlyle senses there's a thread connecting them all. After one of Kim's clients, celebrated chanteuse Tiffany Jones, is slain backstage during a performance at the Apollo Theater, the savvy and beautiful Carlyle pieces together the clues. And what she discovers is a scheme whose complexity, dare and danger were beyond her wildest imaginings. Interactive reading at its most exciting, Who Killed Tiffany Jones? is a page-turning thriller packed with international intrigue, celebrity-based characters, faraway, exotic locales -- and a chance for a clever reader to cash in on the mystery!

African American Viewers And The Black Situation Comedy

Author : Robin R. Means Coleman
ISBN : 0815331258
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 28. 28 MB
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Providing insight into key debates over race and representation in the media, this ethnographic study explores the ways in which African Americans have been depicted in Black situation comedies - from the 1950s Beulah to contemporary series like Martin and Living Single. As scholars increasingly turn their attention to how audiences interpret, use, and resist media texts, Means-Coleman contributes to the development of reception theories by focusing on African American audiences, and bringing their voices to bear on controversies over race and representation.

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