Afrocentricity—the placement of African values and ideals at the center of the discussion surrounding African culture, discourse, and behavior—is an important framework that has emerged over the past decade. In this timely volume, editor Janice D. Hamlet has chosen essays that illuminate various aspects of African American culture, refracted through the lens of Afrocentric thought. In Part I, the basics of Afrocentric ideology and methodology are examined. Part II focuses on Afrocentric approaches to the dynamics of communication. The Afrocentric influence on the black aesthetic is covered in Part III, with an examination of language, literature, oral tradition, movies, and television. Part IV provides a glimpse into the future of Afrocentric visions.
Chapter 12: African Americans in Television: An Afrocentric Analysis
African Americans in Television: An Afrocentric Analysis
You've taken my blues and gone—
You sing 'em on Broadway
And you sing 'em in Hollywood Bowl,
And you mixed 'em up with symphonies
And you fixed 'em
So they don't sound like me.
Yep, you done taken my blues and gone.
You also took my spirituals and gone.
You put me in Macbeth and Carmen Jones
And all kinds of Swing Mikados
And in everything but what's about me—
But someday somebody'll
Stand up and and talk about me.
And write about me,
And put on plays about me!
I reckon it'll be
Yes, it'll be me.
This chapter originally appeared as an article in Western Journal of Black Studies (Vol. 18, No. 4, 1994, ...