Faculty in the News In the News

February 18, 2019 at 4:11 pm

Spectrum Interviews Houston about Blackface and Other Racist Symbols

Dr. Akil Houston, portrait in his office

Dr, Akil Houston

WOUB Digital’s Spectrum interviewed Dr. Akil Houston, Associate Professor of African American Studies at Ohio University, for an episode on “Blackface and Other Racist Symbols Still Plague Our 21st Century Society.”

Despite advances in civil rights in our country’s history, our society, in the 21st century, is still plagued by racist symbols such as “blackface” and other racial stereotyping.

It has been recently brought to the public’s attention through the publication of a blackface photo involving the Governor of Virginia and the admission by that State’s Attorney General that he appeared in blackface while in college in the 1980s.

Such denigration has continued in various forms to allow Caucasians to feel superior to other races and especially African Americans, says Dr. Akil Houston, Associate Professor of Cultural and Media Studies at Ohio University.

Dr. Houston focuses his scholarship on the fields of Africology/African-American, Cinema, Cultural, and Gender Studies. He believes that pop culture is a fertile source for the study of ideologies and racial stereotyping. Additionally, Hip-hop is one of his scholarly interests.

He traces the history of “blackface” and other racist symbols and stereotypes that still prevail in our society. He has written a text about the topic – “Beyond Blackface: Africana Images in U.S. Media.”…

Listen to the interview on Spectrum, hosted by veteran journalist Thomas Hodson, Director of WOUB Public Media.

WOUB Spectrum logo in vivid rainbow

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