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Black Oscars: From Mammy to Minny with Author Dr. Frederick W. Gooding Jr.

Join us to hear Dr. Frederick W. Gooding Jr. speak about his book, Black Oscars: From Mammy to Minny, What the Academy Awards Tell Us about African Americans. This free program will be presented on Zoom on Monday, March 29 at 7:30pm. Please register here.

Second only to the Super Bowl in audience size and revenue, the Oscars are more than a mere ceremony; they are a phenomenon. Hosted by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, for over ninety years the Oscars have long been considered the pinnacle of fantasy, beauty, romance and high class. They are eagerly anticipated and are heavily discussed. 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.

Dr. Gooding’s book and presentation draw on American, African American, and film history to reflect on how the Oscars have recognized African-Americans from the award’s inception to the present. Starting in the 1920s, he provides a thorough analysis and overview of any African-American actors nominated for their Hollywood roles during each decade. By cross-referencing historical trends with prior winners, this program will show consistent patterns when it comes to African-American characters in film and discuss whether mainstream race relations has truly changed substantively or only superficially over time.

Dr. Gooding is an Associate Professor of African American Studies within the Honors College at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX. A trained historian, Gooding analyzes contemporary mainstream media with a careful eye for persistent patterns along racial lines that appear benign but indeed have problematic historical roots. His past work includes You Mean, There’s RACE in My Movie? The Complete Guide to Understanding Race in Mainstream Hollywood and American Dream Deferred.

This program is sponsored by Buncombe County Public Libraries and the YMI Cultural Center, with support from the Friends of the Buncombe County Public Libraries. Register here.