Books and Movies Reviews

Misrepresentations of African Americans in the Media

Misrepresentations of African Americans in the Movies
It seems that the entertainment industry has helped to shape the way that African Americans are viewed by modern day America. As a white male who has little or no experience within an actual black family unit, I am not sure exactly how accurate media portrayals are. However, I am fully aware of the stereotypes that often plague the African American race. Myths and untruths about the work ethic and sexual ferocity of Black males, the unskilled or careless parenting of Black mothers and fathers, and the general moral deterioration of the Black family as a whole run rampant in today's films, television shows, and other forms of media. Through real life interactions and experience, books and classes, and common sense, I have put these stereotypes to rest for myself. I know that they are not accurate. Unfortunately, there are many who do fall victim to the stereotypes, and there are many more who experience prejudice and pain because of them. After watching some movies that are currently popular, it seems to me that the majority of current films that are aimed at an African American audience fill and support these negative stereotypes of African Americans.
When Hollywood pitches an idea for a film, it is aimed towards a specific audience. Some of these movies are specifically aimed towards African American teens. These films usually star African American actors and actresses, sometimes popular rap stars, and they usually take place in an urban setting. I have seen two such comedy movies recently; "Friday", starring Ice Cube, and "How High", starring Method Man and Redman. Because these movies star popular rap artists, they are meant to attract those artists' core audience, African American teens. However, upon viewing these films, I was disturbed rather than amused. Because of the extremely high number of racial stereotypes that these movies held, I co…

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