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The "foppish" black caricature, Jim Crow, became the image of the black man in the mind of the white western world (Engle, 1978).This image was even more powerful in the north and west because many people never had come into contact with African-American individuals.
These attributed characteristics are usually negative (Jewell, 1993).
This paper will identify seven historical racial stereotypes of African-Americans and demonstrate that many of these distorted images still exist in society today.
In fact, the notion of the "happy slave" is the core of the Sambo caricature.
White slave owners molded African-American males, as a whole, into this image of a jolly, overgrown child who was happy to serve his master.
Early silent movies such as "The Wooing and Wedding of a Coon" in 1904, "The Slave" in 1905, "The Sambo Series" 1909-1911 and "The Nigger" in 1915 offered existing stereotypes through a fascinating new medium (Boskin, 1986). Griffith film, the Ku Klux Klan tames the terrifying, savage African-American through lynching.
The premiere of "Birth of a Nation" during the reconstruction period in 1915 marked the change in emphasis from the happy Sambo and the pretentious and inept Jim Crow stereotypes to that of the Savage. Following emancipation, the image of the threatening brute from the "Dark Continent" was revitalized.
by Laura Green Virginia Commonwealth University As human beings, we naturally evaluate everything we come in contact with.
We especially try to gain insight and direction from our evaluations of other people.
Bishop Wipple's Southern Diary, 1834-1844, is evidence of this justification of slavery, "They seem a happy race of beings and if you did not know it you would never imagine that they were slaves" (Boskin, 1989, p. However, it was not only slave owners who adopted the Sambo stereotype (Boskin, 1989).
Although Sambo was born out of a defense for slavery, it extended far beyond these bounds.