Thursday, February 17, 2011

Jamaican Resort's Idea of Entertainment Strangely Reminiscent of Sensationalization Surrounding African Women's Sexuality circa 18th Century Slavery -

We visited a beach on Jamaica's resort town of Ocho Rios a few weeks ago.   Who did the hotel hire to entertain the shiploads of tourists?  See below.  Any thoughts?  Oh, there was a minstrel-like man performing, as well.  Unfortunately, I don't have a photo of him.

Peace and Love (amidst the madness)


  1. I'm happy you posted this Nicole. This entry further exemplifies how entertainment and sensationalism circa 18th century slavery persists in modern media. In addition to your entry, I would like to direct you to a recent photo shoot that Beyonce did for a French magazine

    The theme of the photo-shoot is African Queen. The purpose of the spread is to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the magazine and pay homage to Fela Kuti. The headdresses and fashion pieces she wore are gorgeous, but what is really confusing/disturbing was her choice to allow the make-up artist to paint her face and neck black. Why? If the the theme of the spread was African Queen, why would an already Black woman have to make herself darker to portray that? This perpetuates many stereotypes. For example, the stereotype that there are no light complected Africans in Africa and Africans are exaggeratedly dark. There were arguments made that Beyonce's face was painted as a form of artistic expression to portray the many different hues of Black skin. Well, if that is the case why didn't they use other artists who come in all shades to represent the diversity for this issue instead of perpetuating vintage racist ideas? Have we become that artistically incompetent that we can't create other ways that showcase Black beauty, its diversity and complexity, and African Queens and Kings?

    What is more frustrating is how people have become so conditioned to believe that these modern day minstrel acts are acceptable. It's one thing for an artist to showcase these offensive ads and entertainment acts to educate people about the history of the oppressed, but its another thing to use it as framework for modern day entertainment. Historically, image makers and entertainers have profited off of portraying Blacks to be brutish, inferior, hyper-sexual, and apelike. Although centuries have passed, we must still be able to identify how this has evolved with the changing times, its adverse affects, and how media moguls are still profiting from it. Here is something else to look at to see how vintage racist ads feed Black stereotypes today...

    Once again, thanks for this post and all your other posts. You're ringing the bell like Laurence Fishburne did at the end of the film "School Daze" while yelling "Wake up!!!!!"


  2. Cagney,

    Thanks for the 2 links. Connections are how we best teach ourselves.

    By the way, it's a real honor to be compared to Laurence Fishburne's character in School Daze. Ha! Sis, don't stop ringing the bell for 'em. Hahaha.