Black Oscars: From Mammy to Minny, What the Academy Awards Tell Us about African Americans

ISBN: 9781538123720

Second only to the Super Bowl in audience size and revenue, the Oscars are more than a mere ceremony; they are a phenomenon. It is only recently that movements such as #OscarsSoWhite have raised awareness around the more complicated legacy of the Oscars and African American participation in film.


This timely book draws on American, African American, and film history to reflect on how the Oscars have recognized blacks from the award’s inception to the present. Starting in the 1920s, the chapters provides a thorough analysis and overview of black actors nominated for their Hollywood roles during each decade, with special attention paid to the winners—many of which occur in the latter decades. Historical patterns are analyzed to reveal racial trends and open up the question of whether race relations have truly changed substantively or only superficially over time.

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