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British television and constructs of race

Adjusting the contrast National and cultural identity, ethnicity and difference have always been major themes within the national psyche. People are witnessing the rise and visibility of far-right politics and counter-movements in the UK and USA. Simultaneously, there is an urgent need to defend the role of public service media. This book emerges at a time when these shifts and conjunctures that impact on and shape how 'race' and racial difference are perceived. They are coinciding with rapidly changing media contexts and environments and the kinds of racial representations that are constructed within public service broadcasting (PSB), specifically the BBC and Channel 4. The book explores a range of texts and practices that address the ongoing phenomenon of race and its relationship to television. Policies and the management of race; transnationalism and racial diversity; historical questions of representation; the myth of a multicultural England are also explored. It interrogates three television primarily created by women, written by women, feature women in most of the lead roles, and forcefully reassert the place of women in British history. The book contributes to the range of debates around television drama and black representation, examining BBC's Shoot the Messenger and Top Boy. Finally, it explores some of the history that led to the belated breakthrough of Black and Asian British comedy. The book also looks at the production of jokes about race and colour prior to the 1980s and 1990s, and questioning what these jokes tell us about British multiculturalism in this period.

Substance, symbols, and hope

The election of Barack Obama was a milestone in US history with tremendous symbolic importance for the black community. But was this symbolism backed up by substance? Did ordinary black people really benefit under the first black president?

This is the question that Andra Gillespie sets out to answer in Race and the Obama Administration. Using a variety of methodological techniques—from content analysis of executive orders to comparisons of key indicators, such as homeownership and employment rates under Clinton, Bush, and Obama— the book charts the progress of black causes and provides valuable perspective on the limitations of presidential power in addressing issues of racial inequality. Gillespie uses public opinion data to investigate the purported disconnect between Obama’s performance and his consistently high ratings among black voters, asking how far the symbolic power of the first black family in the White House was able to compensate for the compromises of political office.

Scholarly but accessible, Race and the Obama Administration will be of interest to students and lecturers in US politics and race studies, as well as to general readers who want to better understand the situation of the black community in the US today and the prospects for its improvement.

Meghji Ali

functions of Black cultural capital is to resist and roll back these controlling images of Blackness that are promoted through dominant cultural capital. In this regard, Black cultural capital is inherently connected to a politics of Black representation. Black cultural capital, Black representation Following Stuart Hall’s advice,10 it is useful to think of the politics of Black representation on two levels: basic and advanced. ‘Basic’ representation, on the one hand, aims towards increasing the number of Black cultural producers, such as writers, artists, and

in Black middle class Britannia
Abstract only
Politics and deeper currentsin public opinion
Tom Clark
Robert D. Putnam
, and
Edward Fieldhouse

representation – a very British grievance So an underlying trend towards greater black representation in the US preceded Obama’s rise and seems to be mirrored to some extent in the UK. The next question is whether the rise is as well advanced in Britain. Certainly, the total of 10,000 black elected officials that Figure 7.2 records in contemporary America far exceeds England’s 600–750 non-white councillors – even allowing for the fact that there are many more black Americans overall than minority ethnic Britons. But this comparison is not straightforward because of

in The age of Obama
Open Access (free)
Laura Chrisman

towards the liberatory properties of the public sphere and rationality. These are frequently associated with the Enlightenment, taken to be both an historical period and a philosophical disposition. The Enlightenment is then construed as the instrument or origin of racial and colonial domination. I am interested to present other ways, here, of thinking about the relations of racism, colonialism, and the public sphere. A persuasive alternative is suggested in Madhu Dubey’s account of contemporary black representation in the USA: even in the most difference

in Postcolonial contraventions
Black representation and Top Boy
Kehinde Andrews

5 The iconic ghetto on British television: Black representation and Top Boy Kehinde Andrews Top Boy is an eight-part British drama, which ran over two series in 2011 and 2013. The show follows the rise of Dushane up the ranks of drug dealers on the fictional Summerhouse estate in London. Alongside his story is an ensemble cast of characters and narratives that explore life on the estate. The focus on drugs and gangs in the inner city led to the show inevitably being dubbed the ‘British answer to the Wire’.1 Like the Wire, the show was written by a white writer

in Adjusting the contrast
Abstract only
Sarita Malik
Darrell M. Newton

role of public service television in a critical politics of racialised representations. Contemporary critical concerns of race, representation and television Recent studies point to the significance of these concerns and are reflected on here by the authors. Former studies that have addressed the matter Introduction 3 of Black representation on British public service television include the work of Twitchin, Daniels and Gerson, Cottle, Malik, and Downing and Husband.6 Issues of PSB policy have also been important for helping produce an understanding of the ways in

in Adjusting the contrast
Abstract only
The return to science fiction– Le Cinquième Element, 1997
Susan Hayward

does the camera circle around him in medium close-up when he is in disguise as black? There are other problematic representations of blackness. The black president is an ineffectual puppet whose white military do not obey him. 4 And of course the ‘outrageous’ radio compère, the transvestite (or is she just a drag queen?) Ruby Rhod (embodied by Chris Tucker) would make any white liberal uncomfortable about questions of black

in Luc Besson
Dr Jenny Barrett

the UK to fundraise. So, there is for me a really interesting relationship between America and Britain that is still to be explored. As an area of study, we need more researchers. Regarding Black representation, in 1942 the NAACP’s Walter White tried to forge an agreement with Hollywood studios on this matter. This is a discussion that has gone on and on. Long before this, I

in D.W. Griffith’s The Birth of a Nation
Open Access (free)
Jonathan Seglow

. Here I shall mention three kinds. First, there are rights to do with government. They include the special representation rights such as the guaranteed seats for Maori representatives in the New Zealand Parliament, and the race-conscious drawing of district lines to boost black representation in the USA. It also includes devolved power of the kind fought for by Aboriginal peoples in Canada and Australia, the Scots, Welsh and

in Political concepts