That’s Enough, Folks: Black Images in Animated Cartoons, 1900-1960

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That's Enough, Folks: Black Images in Animated Cartoons, 1900-1960


Henry T. Sampson

Date published:



Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press

ISBN: 081083250X (cloth : alk. paper)


Using advertisements, quotes from producers, newspaper reviews, & other sources, the author traces stereotypical black images through their transition from the first newspaper comic strips in the late 1890s, to their inclusion in the first silent theatrical cartoons, through the peak of their popularity in 1930s musical cartoons, to their gradual decline in the 1960s. He provides detailed storylines with dialogue, revealing the extensive use of negative caricatures of African Americans. The author devotes chapters to cartoon series starring Black characters, cartoons burlesquing life on the old slave plantation with “happy” slaves Uncle Tom & Topsy, depictions of the African safari that include the white hunter, his devoted servant, & bloodthirsty Black cannibals, and cartoons featuring the music and the widely popular entertainment style of famous 1930s black stars including Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, & Fats Waller. The book includes many rare, previously unpublished illustrations & original animation stills & an appendix listing cartoon titles with black characters along with brief descriptions of gags in these cartoons.

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