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African American Psychology, Bamboozled Essay

1447 words - 6 pages

African American Psych.
Paper 1
18 September 2008

Spike Lee's movie, “Bamboozled”, is a very important movie that opens the door to positive racial dialog. Even though Lee's film did not get great reviews at the box office, as many of his other films have, viewers founds that “Bamboozled” brought up many important questions pertaining to the media and the way African Americans are portrayed in films and on television. The film reveals the idea that to be an African American on television or in movies, one must play a certain type of role or be type-cast. Lee points out that as African American's are expected to fall into these roles willingly, just as Mantan and Sleep'n'Eat ...view middle of the document...

However, in Lee's defense, he did not spare his main characters from some of the blame for the terrifying epidemic that followed the television “experiment”.
All of Spike Lee's films demand that people think about important racial issues, “Bamboozled” is no exception to the rules. Surely throughout America's violent history, African American's have been oppressed by many white people; however, to suggest that all white people feel the same and have acted the same towards all African American people is a gross stereotype that viewers simply did not expect from such a respected artist as Lee. Lee was seemingly looking for controversy, which was in fact a genius way to market his intelligent, racially driven film.
Another somewhat disappointing part of the film, was Lee's revolutionist rap group the “Mau Maus”. Although their ideals were righteous and their anger founded upon truth, the way in which Lee has them “change” the way the world of media is headed, is, quite frankly, terrifying. Viewers did appreciate that Lee used such artists as Mos Def and The Roots, artists who live what they preach and who believe in peaceful cultural restoration. Maybe Lee meant for the outcome of the film to be frightening; however, it seemed to many viewers to be another justification for violence among passionate young people.
Many people, of all races, believe that violence simply is not the answer. Sure it makes for an exciting, climactic ending, but could he not choose another way? Viewers question if Lee would actually support a violent revolution. Must African American's really resort to violence to conquer the oppression they withstand? If so, would they not be perpetuating what they have so bravely fought against for the past two hundred years? From the Spanish conquests to the Trans-Atlantic slave trade and now to the war in Iraq, Westerners have continuously and violently displayed power over non-Western peoples, perhaps it is. in fact, time for a violent revolution against them. However, viewers would hope their would be a more peaceful resolution to the argument. Viewers cannot be entirely sure what will end America's reign of terror, but there is one thing they can be sure of, as the new generation of young people, African and Caucasian people alike, establish their homes, families, businesses, churches, schools, and ethical standards there will be a new emphasis on embracing diversity and breaking down the shameful American tradition of lies, racism, and oppression. There is a new generation of young people, along with some of their elders, who believe in a peaceful, renewed America, where racial stereotypes can be broken and humanity in all of its diversity can be embraced by all. Maybe these are high-fahluten ideas; however, until American's of all races, genders, orientations, religions, and ages can lay down their bitterness and resentment towards peoples other than their own, America will continue to hold up the...

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