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If we—the audiences who want to see black actresses on screen but are troubled by the premise of The Help and the politics of Hollywood Blockbuster films and Mainstream Bestselling novels which still, in 2011 not 1963 or some other painful past, exclude black screenwriters, directors, actresses, and novelists from the kind of support and marketing that made The Help a juggernaut—if we don’t go to The Help—why the Hollywood machine won’t risk featuring black ladies again, probably for a long time. The systemic repercussions will be our fault, not the writer’s fault. I keep hearing this. If the film fails, if execs don’t greenlight films featuring black ladies after a disappointing showing for The Help, it’ll be because we—the skeptics—didn’t give this movie a chance.

The logic of this is brutal. We are blamed for systemic problems, but those capitalizing on them are just doing…well, good art. Who can blame them for that?

Andrea Hairston snarks all over ‘The Help’ (because I didn’t already love her, her work and her ginormous brain)…. (via theycallmezorawalker)

It’s a never-ending cycle of excuses: “We gave you crap. now…why won’t you eat it?” 

(via squeetothegee)

If someone says some assbackwards shit like this in my face, it’s on. Really?

(via strugglingtobeheard)

I’ve heard this about everything from martin Lawrence’s fat suit movies to whatever awful thing Tyler Perry has put out in his violent grandma drag. If the only thing Hollywood is willing to greenlight is demeaning or negative portrayals of black women, what does that tell you about the message Hollywood is committed to sending to viewers including black women? They’re going to sell racist stereotypes whether we go or not.

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The issues that face African-American women were not kind of Real Housewives of Jackson, Mississippi, Mean Girls behavior. That’s not what it was. It was rape. It was lynching. It was the burning of communities. What this movie does, in 2011, is it completes the work that happened and started in 1923 when the Daughters of the American Confederacy, along with Sen John Williams from Mississippi, found money in the federal budget to erect a granite statue of Mammy in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial, which had just been dedicated in 1922. This is the same Senate that refused to pass the Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill. In other words, a Senate that allowed black men to be lynched without federal oversight, but had the time to pass a bill that said we could erect a statue to Mammy. Now this is not granite and it’s not on federal land, but it is the same notion that the fidelity of black women domestics is more important than the realities of the lives and the pain, the anguish, the rape, the lynching that they experienced. And for that reason, it’s not artistic, it’s ahistorical. And it’s deeply troubling.

Melissa Harris-Perry, talking about the messages in the new movie The Help on Lawrence O’Donnell’s show last night. Watch the full clip here. (via thepoliticalnotebook)

Da-Yum. And this moment right here is why sometimes, sometimes, I really love history. Because I had never heard of the statue of Mammy (gtfoh), but it puts in relief the imaginary feats, being incorrectly understood and portrayed as truth, being promulgated in this novel and other places as people attempt to whitewash the holy hell out of the racial terror faced by African Americans in the South and elsewhere.

(via femmenoire)