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Week 10: Race and Humour

by Associate Professor in Cultural and Social Analysis at University of Western Sydney on May 13, 2012

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As a special topic, this week will look at the fine line between racism and ‘humour’. British film and television has long been a site for views of the other. Originally, these were represented by ...

As a special topic, this week will look at the fine line between racism and ‘humour’. British film and television has long been a site for views of the other. Originally, these were represented by white actors and comedians whose interpretations of ethnic minority life were often perceived as insulting and patronising. More recently, British filmmakers, actors and comedians have introduced a new genre to the British cultural sphere, one that takes a playful look at minority ethnic communities from their own perspective. It has been suggested that these representation are non-racist because they come from those potentially affected by racism themselves. In light of the recent furore surrounding the Borat film by Sascha Baron Cohen and other examples, this session asks what counts as humour and what is merely racist. We will be examining this question through the use of clips from different films and television shows as well as classic jokes. We will be relying mainly on clips of various films and TV shows to be shown in the lecture.

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Week 10: Race and Humour Week 10: Race and Humour Presentation Transcript