Black on black : urban youth films and the multicultural audience /

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Main Author: Fisher, Celeste A.
Format: Book
Language:English
Published:Lanham, Md. : Scarecrow Press, 2006.
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Online Access:Table of contents 
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Review by Choice Review

The title of this slim book suggests a more overarching and absolute presentation than the straightforward materials it in fact offers. Instead of "the multicultural audience," Fisher (an independent scholar who teaches film and media in New York City) examines reactions of students in a summer college class she taught (year unspecified, probably in New York City) to three early 1990s films portraying the ghetto: Menace II Society, Juice, and Boyz n the Hood. The book mingles pedagogy, discourse analysis, and basic film analysis, and it often subjects the students themselves to reductionist characterizations by race and gender (women dominate discussion; only one male identifies himself as part black). The author's reconstruction of conversational dynamics yields some insights into how opinions take shape, although generalizing beyond the classroom setting is impossible. Her complaints--that students did not refer to readings, did not question documentaries, and failed to grapple effectively with complex visual aesthetics--are not surprising. Fisher's observations would have been more effective as a cogent article. The book's filmography is limited. ^BSumming Up: Not recommended. G. W. McDonogh Bryn Mawr College

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.

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