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- DescriptionIn 1929 and 1930, during the Hollywood studios' conversion to synchronized-sound film production, white-controlled trade magazines and African American newspapers celebrated a vogue for Negro films. Hollywood's African American Films argues that the movie business turned to black musical performance to both resolve techlogical and aesthetic problems introduced by the medium of talking pictures and, at the same time, to appeal to the white Broadway audience that patronized their most lucrative first-run theaters. Capitalizing on highbrow associations with white slumming in African American cabarets and on the cultural linkage between popular black musical styles and natural acoustics, studios produced a series of African American-cast and white-cast films featuring African American sequences. Ryan Jay Friedman asserts that these transitional films reflect contradictions within prevailing racial ideologies--arising most clearly in the movies' treatment of African American characters' decisions to migrate. Regardless of how the films represent these choices, they all prompt elaborate visual and narrative structures of containment that tend to highlight rather than suppress historical tensions surrounding African American social mobility, Jim Crow codes, and white exploitation of black labor.
- Author BiographyRyan Jay Friedman is an assistant professor in the department of English and the program in film studies at The Ohio State University.
- Author(s)Ryan Jay Friedman
- PublisherRutgers University Press
- Date of Publication15/07/2011
- SubjectFilm, TV & Radio
- Place of PublicationNew Brunswick, NJ
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintRutgers University Press
- Content Note20
- Weight456 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine16 mm
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