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Full-Text Articles in African American Studies

Black Audiences, Blaxploitation And Kung Fu Films, And Challenges To White Celluloid Masculinity, Sundiata K. Cha-Jua Jan 2008

Black Audiences, Blaxploitation And Kung Fu Films, And Challenges To White Celluloid Masculinity, Sundiata K. Cha-Jua

Sundiata K Cha-Jua

The roots of African Americans’ attraction to kung fu films are deeply embed- ded in their sociohistorical experiences. Simply put, it is a product of blacks’ political and cultural resistance to racial oppression. Although “repression breeds resistance,” opposing oppression is never simple; it is always varied and complex. Resistance is as likely to include cross-cutting strategies and discourses as mutually reinforcing ones. Two different but overlapping ideo- logical discourses, Pan-Africanism and Black Internationalism, help explain African Americans’ fascination with kung fu films. Pan-Africanists view the diverse dispersed peoples of African descent as one family. And perhaps, more importantly, they locate ...


Mamie Bradley's Unbearable Burden: Sexual And Aesthetic Politics In Bebe Moore Campbell's Your Blues Ain't Like Mine, Koritha Mitchell Jan 2008

Mamie Bradley's Unbearable Burden: Sexual And Aesthetic Politics In Bebe Moore Campbell's Your Blues Ain't Like Mine, Koritha Mitchell

Koritha Mitchell

This essay offers a reading of Bebe Moore Campbell's 1992 novel Your Blues Ain't Like Mine, which re-imagines the 1955 murder of Emmett Till and its aftermath. I argue that the novel is a tribute to Till and his mother, Mamie Bradley, but that it also illustrates the agony of being the survivor whose pain occasions such tributes. Through Delotha Todd, the character loosely based on Bradley, Campbell imagines the mother's burden to have been especially unbearable because so many strangers, including Campbell herself, claimed to share it. In the process of acknowledging the many facets Delotha ...