Washington Redskins name controversy
The Washington Redskins name controversy involves the name and logo of the Washington Redskins, a National Football League franchise in the Washington metropolitan area. Native Americans have been questioning the use of the name and image since the 1960s, while the topic has received widespread public attention since the 1990s. Native Americans demanding change include tribal nations, national tribal organizations, civil rights organizations, individuals; the largest of these organizations, the National Congress of American Indians, counted the enrollment of its member tribes as totaling 1.2 million individuals in 2013. According to the American Psychological Association as of 2010, over 115 professional organizations representing civil rights, educational and scientific experts have published resolutions or policies that state that the use of Native American names and/or symbols by non-native sports teams is a harmful form of ethnic stereotyping that promotes misunderstanding and prejudice, contributing to other problems faced by Native Americans.
In response to the possibility that the team could return to the District of Columbia in a new stadium, a coalition of nine civil rights organizations issued a statement in August 2018 that such a move should not be made "unless the team agrees to drop the'R-word' racial slur as its mascot."The Washington, D. C. team is only one example of the larger controversy, but it receives more public attention because modern dictionaries define the name as derogatory or insulting and because the team represents the nation's capital. Public awareness of the issues has been growing based upon social science research on the harmful effects of stereotyping; the number of high school and college teams using the Redskins name has been declining along with other Native American mascots. There is a growing number of public officials, sports commentators and other journalists advocating a change; as well as picketing and other forms of direct protest, opponents took legal action to cancel the trademarks held by the team.
On June 18, 2014, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board of the United States Patent and Trademark Office voted to cancel the Redskins federal trademark registrations, considering them "disparaging to Native Americans". The cancellation was affirmed in 2015 by the judge in a first appeal by the Redskins. However, in June 2017 the Supreme Court of the United States came to a unanimous decision in a different case, ruling that not allowing disparaging names to be protected by trademark registration is an unconstitutional infringement of freedom of speech, thus voiding the legal basis for the cancellation of the Redskins' trademarks. Support for continued use of the name has come from the team's owners, the NFL Commissioner, a majority of fans, which include some Native American individuals. Supporters say that the name honors the achievements and virtues of Native Americans, that it is not intended in a negative manner. Some, such as team president Bruce Allen point to the use of Redskins by three high school teams, two on reservations, that have a majority of Native American students.
Supporters have asserted that a majority of Native Americans are not offended by the name based upon a national poll by Annenberg Public Policy Center in 2004. In a commentary published soon after that poll, 15 Native American scholars collaborated on a critique that stated that there were so many flaws in the Annenberg study that rather than being a measure of Native American opinion, it was an expression of white privilege and colonialism. Specific criticism of the methodology includes the use of self-reporting to identify Native Americans, which violated the basic principles supporting the validity of public opinion polling. In May 2016, the Washington Post published a poll that duplicated the central question posed in 2004, yielding an identical result. In 1933 the football team that shared both the name and playing field with the Boston Braves baseball team moved to Fenway Park home to the Boston Red Sox. Co-owner George Preston Marshall changed the name to the Redskins, more to avoid confusion while retaining the Indian imagery of the team than to honor coach William Henry "Lone Star" Dietz, whose identity as a Native American was debated.
The logo for the NFL Braves was similar to the current logo, a Native American head in profile with braids and trailing feathers. The current logo, proposed by Walter Wetzel, a former Blackfeet tribal chairman and past president of the National Congress of American Indians, was introduced in 1972 and is modeled after the likeness on the Buffalo nickel. Members of the Blackfeet tribe express a range of opinions, from support to indifference to strong opposition to the Redskins name based upon their personal experiences. Advocates of changing the team's name say that stereotypes of Native Americans must be understood in the context of a history that includes conquest, forced relocation, organized efforts by federal and state governments to eradicate native cultures, such as the boarding schools of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. "Since the first Europeans made landfall in North America, native peoples have suffered under a weltering array of stereotypes and caricatures. Whether portrayed as noble savages, ignoble savages, teary-eyed environmentalists or, most simply as casino-rich, native peoples find their efforts to be treated with a measure of respect and integrity undermined by images that flatten complex tribal and personal experience into one-dimensional representations that tells us more about the depicters than about the depicted."
The historical context for the emergence in the Americas of racial identities based upon skin color was the establishment of colonies which developed a
Chief Wahoo was the logo of the Cleveland Indians, a Major League Baseball franchise based in Cleveland, Ohio. As part of the larger Native American mascot controversy, it drew criticism from Native Americans, social scientists, religious and educational groups, but remains popular among many fans of the Cleveland Indians baseball team. On January 29, 2018, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and Indians' owner Paul Dolan announced that Chief Wahoo would no longer appear on uniforms or stadium signs following the end of the 2018 season. Merchandise featuring the logo will still be available at the Indians' ballpark and retail stores in Ohio, but will no longer be sold on the league's website; the team's primary logo is now a block "C". The Chief Wahoo logo was last worn by the Indians in an 11–3 loss to the Houston Astros on October 8, 2018 in the 2018 American League Division Series. News outlets noted the irony of the logo's final appearance being on Indigenous Peoples' Day/Columbus Day. In 1932, the front page of the Plain Dealer featured a cartoon by Fred George Reinert that used a caricatured Native American character with a definite resemblance to the Chief Wahoo as a stand-in for the Cleveland Indians winning an important victory.
The character came to be called "The Little Indian," becoming a fixture in the paper's coverage of the team, including a small front-page visual box where his head would peek out to announce the outcome of the latest game. Journalist George Condon would write in 1972, "When the baseball club decided to adopt an Indian caricature as its official symbol, it hired an artist to draw a little guy who came close to Reinert's creation. In 1947, Cleveland Indians owner Bill Veeck hired the J. F. Novak Company, designers of patches worn by the Cleveland police and fire departments, to create a new logo for his team. Seventeen-year-old draftsman Walter Goldbach, an employee of the Novak Company, was asked to perform the job. Tasked with creating a mascot that "would convey a spirit of pure joy and unbridled enthusiasm", he created a smiling face with yellow skin and a prominent nose. Goldbach has said that he had difficulty "figuring out how to make an Indian look like a cartoon", that he was influenced by the cartoon style, popular at the time.
The phrase "Chief Wahoo" had been used for years before its use as a reference to the Indian's mascot. There was a popular newspaper comic strip called “Big Chief Wahoo” that ran from 1936 to 1947. Native American player, Louis Sockalexis, was an outfielder for the Indian's predecessors the Cleveland Spiders, he is one of the first Native Americans to play Major League Baseball. Questionable origin myth indicates; the Penobscot, Louis Sockalexis' tribe, petitioned the Cleveland Indians to discontinue the use of Chief Wahoo. Native American baseball player, Allie Reynolds, pitched for the Indians for five years, beginning in 1942 as a starter, he was traded to the New York Yankees. On October 6, 1950, the Plain Dealer, under the title of “Chief Wahoo Whizzing,” stated “Allie Reynolds, the copper-skinned Creek” lost to Philadelphia, but “in the clutches, the Chief was a standup gent—tougher than Sitting Bull.” In subsequent articles, he is called “Chief Wahoo,” “old Wahoo,” and just plain “Wahoo.”
In 1952, for the first time “Chief Wahoo” was given as the name for the Indians’ physical mascot, when a person in a Wahoo costume shows up for a kids’ party at Public Hall given by “Cleveland’s dentists.”Sportswriters would take to calling the unnamed character "Chief Wahoo". Goldbach has said. Quoting a child he met while talking at a school, Goldbach explained in a 2008 interview, "He's not a chief, he's a brave, he only has one feather. Chiefs have full headdresses."In 1951, the mascot was redesigned with a smaller nose and red skin instead of yellow skin. This red skin logo appeared in 1948 and 1949; this logo has remained in use since, with only minor changes to the design. In the 1950s, the logo had red skin. After its introduction, the face of the 1951 logo was incorporated into other, full-body depictions of the character. Ohio sportswriter Terry Pluto has described comics of Chief Wahoo that would run on the front page of the Cleveland Plain Dealer in the 1950s, with the character's depiction signifying the outcome of yesterday's game.
Wins were illustrated by Chief Wahoo holding a lantern in one hand and extending the index finger on his other. Losses were illustrated by a "battered" Chief Wahoo, complete with black eye, missing teeth, crumpled feathers. By 1973, when Cleveland businessman Nick Mileti bought the baseball team, the team had introduced additional depictions of Chief Wahoo, some of which showed the character at bat. Mileti hired. Several changes were made: Wahoo's nose was made smaller, his body thinner, he was now drawn as a right-handed batter instead of left-handed. Overall, the design of Chief Wahoo remained similar to the previous version; these modifications, heralded other changes to the team's use of Indian-themed imagery, such as the removal of a teepee from the outfield area. The 1973 logo is no longer used by the team; when the Cleveland Indians installed a new computer-programmed scoreboard in 1977, newspaper articles described how it could display animated depictions of Chief Wahoo yelling "Charge!"
By the 1978 season home runs were celebrated with fireworks and a scoreboard animation of Chief Wahoo dancing. The complete package of commissioned animations included a
Zema Williams, better known as Chief Zee, was a well-known fan and unofficial mascot of the Washington Redskins of the National Football League. Dressed in a faux Native American war bonnet, rimmed glasses, red jacket, Chief Zee began attending Redskins games in 1978. Born in Colquitt, Georgia on July 7 1941, Williams worked as a sharecropper and picked cotton as a youth, he drove a truck, when he got a draft notice in 1960. Two years he completed his military service at Fort Riley, returned to driving trucks. By 1968, he was a car salesman in Washington, D. C. Williams first showed up in costume at RFK Stadium on September 10, 1978. In 1983, Chief Zee attended a game against the Eagles at Veterans Stadium. After taunting the Eagles fans following their team's 10-point loss to the Redskins, he was attacked, suffering a broken leg and torn original costume, leaving him hospitalized, he returned the next year to Philadelphia but after a woman threw a beer in his face, it was his last time. On August 9, 2008, Williams set down his signature prop, a toy tomahawk, while he was signing autographs at the Redskins' preseason game against the Buffalo Bills.
When he turned to retrieve it, it was gone. The 12-inch tomahawk has a slender wooden handle with a rubber blade, appears in many photos of Williams since he started attending Redskins games over 30 years prior. By August 28, 2008, Chief Zee's tomahawk has been returned to him with the help of Redskins tight end Chris Cooley who got a call from someone that said they had it, he swapped a signed jersey for the tomahawk. In his years, Williams lived on Social Security and had difficulty walking. Dan Snyder, the owner of the Redskins, purchased the scooter. Williams faced eviction due to not being able to keep up with his rent, but several fans used a GoFundMe campaign to raise enough to pay both back rent and enough ahead that the situation would not arise again. Williams died in his sleep on July 19, 2016. November 7, 1985 was declared "Chief Zee Day" in Washington, D. C. In 2000, Visa and the Pro Football Hall of Fame selected the biggest fan of each of the then-31 teams and placed them in an exhibit in Canton.
He was the fan chosen for the Washington Redskins. Some consider Williams' portrayal of American Indians to have been offensive, his use of a stylized headdress was referenced as the reason for offense, as the headdress is a sacred, central cultural item for many tribes. The Barrel Man Crazy Ray Fireman Ed Hogettes License Plate Guy
Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs compete in the National Football League as a member club of the league's American Football Conference West division; the team was founded in 1960 as the Dallas Texans by businessman Lamar Hunt and was a charter member of the American Football League. In 1963, the team assumed their current name; the Chiefs joined the NFL as a result of the merger in 1970. The team is valued at over $2 billion. Hunt's son, serves as chairman and CEO. While Hunt's ownership stakes passed collectively to his widow and children after his death in 2006, Clark represents the Chiefs at all league meetings and has ultimate authority on personnel changes; the Chiefs have won three AFL championships, in 1962, 1966, 1969. They became the second AFL team to defeat an NFL team in an AFL–NFL World Championship Game, when they defeated the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV; the team's victory on January 11, 1970, remains the club's last championship game victory and appearance to date, occurred in the final such competition prior to the leagues' merger coming into full effect.
The Chiefs were the second team, after the Green Bay Packers, to appear in more than one Super Bowl and the first to appear in the championship game in two different decades. Despite post-season success early in the franchise's history, winning five of their first six postseason games, the team has struggled to find success in the playoffs since; as of the conclusion of the 2018–19 playoffs, they have lost 12 of their last 14 playoff games, including eight straight, at the time the longest playoff losing streak in NFL history. The playoff losing streak stretched from the 1993-94 AFC Championship game to the 2013-14 Divisional Round; the only playoffs wins over the last 14 playoff games were a 30–0 win over the Texans in the 2015–16 playoffs and a 31–13 over the Colts in the 2018–19 playoffs. In 1959, Lamar Hunt began discussions with other businessmen to establish a professional football league that would rival the National Football League. Hunt's desire to secure a football team was heightened after watching the 1958 NFL Championship Game between the New York Giants and Baltimore Colts.
After unsuccessful attempts to purchase and relocate the NFL's Chicago Cardinals to his hometown of Dallas, Hunt went to the NFL and asked to create an expansion franchise in Dallas. The NFL turned him down, so Hunt established the American Football League and started his own team, the Dallas Texans, to begin play in 1960. Hunt hired a little-known assistant coach from the University of Miami football team, Hank Stram, to be the team's head coach after the job offer was declined by Bud Wilkinson and Tom Landry. After Stram was hired, Don Klosterman was hired as head scout, credited by many for bringing a wealth of talent to the Texans after luring it away from the NFL hiding players and using creative means to land them; the Texans shared the Cotton Bowl with the NFL's cross-town competition Dallas Cowboys for three seasons. The Texans were to have exclusive access to the stadium until the NFL put an expansion team, the Dallas Cowboys, there. While the team averaged a league-best 24,500 at the Cotton Bowl, the Texans gained less attention due to the AFL's lower profile compared to the NFL.
In the franchise's first two seasons, the team managed only an 8 -- 6 -- 8 record, respectively. In their third season, the Texans strolled to an 11–3 record and a berth in the team's first American Football League Championship Game, against the Houston Oilers; the game was broadcast nationally on ABC and the Texans defeated the Oilers 20–17 in double overtime. The game lasted 77 minutes and 54 seconds, which still stands as the longest championship game in professional football history, it turned out to be the last game. Despite competing against a Cowboys team that managed only a 9–28–3 record in their first three seasons, Hunt decided that the Dallas–Fort Worth media market could not sustain two professional football franchises, he considered moving the Texans to either Miami for the 1963 season. However, he was swayed by an offer from Kansas City Mayor Harold Roe Bartle. Bartle promised to triple the franchise's season ticket sales and expand the seating capacity of Municipal Stadium to accommodate the team.
Hunt agreed to relocate the franchise to Kansas City on May 22, 1963, on May 26 the team was renamed the Kansas City Chiefs. Hunt and head coach Hank Stram planned to retain the Texans name, but a fan contest determined the new "Chiefs" name in honor of Mayor Bartle's nickname that he acquired in his professional role as Scout Executive of the St. Joseph and Kansas City Boy Scout Councils and founder of the Scouting Society, the Tribe of Mic-O-Say. A total of 4,866 entries were received with 1,020 different names being suggested, including a total of 42 entrants who selected "Chiefs." The two names that received the most popular votes were "Mules" and "Royals". The franchise became one of the strongest teams in the now thriving American Football League, with the most playoff appearances for an AFL team, the most AFL Championships; the team's dominance helped Lamar Hunt become a central figure in negotiations with NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle to agree on an AFL–NFL merger. In the meetings between the two leagues, a merged league championship game was agreed to be pla
Suzan Shown Harjo
Suzan Shown Harjo is an advocate for American Indian rights. She is a poet, lecturer and policy advocate, who has helped Native peoples recover more than one million acres of tribal lands. After co-producing the first Indian news show in the nation for WBAI radio while living in New York City, producing other shows and theater, in 1974 she moved to Washington, DC, to work on national policy issues, she served as Congressional liaison for Indian affairs in the President Jimmy Carter administration and as president of the National Council of American Indians. Harjo is President of a national Native American rights organization. Since the 1960s, she has worked on getting sports teams to drop names that promote negative stereotypes of Native Americans. In June 2014, the Patent and Trademark Office revoked the Washington Redskins trademark. By 2013 two-thirds of teams with American Indian mascots had changed them due to these public campaigns. On November 24, 2014, Harjo received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' highest civilian honor.
She was born as Suzan Shown on June 1945 in El Reno, Oklahoma. Her mother was Cheyenne and her father Muscogee, they lived on his allotment near Beggs. One of her maternal great-grandfathers was Chief Bull Bear. Between the ages of 12 and 16 she lived with her family in Naples, where her father was stationed while in the US Army. Upon her return to the States, she moved to New York City, where she worked in radio and the theater; the roots of Suzan Shown Harjo's activism date from the mid-1960s, when she co-produced Seeing Red, a bi-weekly radio program on New York's WBAI FM station. Some of her pioneering radio work is preserved at the Pacifica Radio Archives in Los Angeles, she worked on it with Frank Harjo, whom she met and married in New York. They worked on issues of protecting religious freedom for American Indians. In New York she worked in independent theatre and radio and performing in numerous plays. After seeing sacred garments in the Museum of the American Indian in New York in 1967, she worked for repatriation to tribes of such items and for changes in museum policies.
They moved to Washington D. C. in 1974, when Suzan Harjo started working as a legislative liaison for two law firms representing Indian rights. For a time she was news director for the American Indian Press Association. Harjo was elected to the Common Cause National Governing Board in 1982. In 1978 President Jimmy Carter appointed Harjo as a Congressional liaison for Indian affairs. Harjo worked with multiple subcommittees within Congress to advocate Native American positions in the formation of federal policy. Harjo supported such issues as hunting and fishing rights on traditional lands and land contracts rights. Indian activists were filing longstanding claims for historic insufficient payment by the federal government for Indian lands under numerous treaties, government representatives suggested there should be a statute of limitations for such claims, her continued lobbying related to religious freedom helped lead to passage of the American Indian Religious Freedom Act in 1978, which Carter supported.
In a Statute of Limitations for Indian Claims hearing on February 17, 1982, Harjo noted that the federal government had failed to comply with laws in place to pay tribal nations settled claims since 1966. Harjo fought for land rights. Congressional delays added to the time to settle such cases; as a Washington Post article reported on this issue, Harjo said, "They're adding 10 to 15 yrs. to a litigation process, now going on… What I'm fearful is that tribes that are now negotiating in good faith… will back off and refuse to compromise." Suzan Shown Harjo served as the Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians from 1984 to 1989. The NCAI, a non-profit organization to represent all Native American Indians as well as Alaska Natives, was founded in 1944. Harjo persisted in working with Congress to support Native American rights to traditional hunting and fishing, she supported gaining more funds for Native American education. The NCAI goal was to ensure Native American children were educated, with her leadership they gained increased appropriations for that purpose in 1984, 1986, 1988.
Harjo pressed the Congressional committee to gain access to government documents related to programs for Native Americans, asked for continued support of Native American attempts at economic development. In the 1980s, she was concerned about declining federal support for health clinics on reservations and the adverse result of subsequent higher mortality rates among Native Americans. During this period, Harjo continued to work on issues of repatriation of sacred items from museums to tribes, changes in the ways researchers dealt with American Indian human remains and artifacts, her work, together with hundreds of others, resulted in additional reforms and national legislation in 1989 and 1990. She has spoken out against the negative portrayals of Native Americans in stereotypes featured in movies and television. Harjo has criticized author Ward Churchill's controversial claim of Native American ancestry, unsupported by documentation, she has publicly denounced his claims. Harjo has appeared as a spokesman for Native American issues on many television programs, including Oprah!, C-SPAN, Larry King Live.
Harjo is a columnist for the online newspaper Indian Country Today. Harjo contributed to development and passage of federal legislation protecting Native sovereignty and cultures, human rights; these include
Cultural appropriation, at times phrased cultural misappropriation, is the adoption of elements of one culture by members of another culture. This can be controversial when members of a dominant culture appropriate from disadvantaged minority cultures. Cultural appropriation is considered harmful by many, to be a violation of the collective intellectual property rights of the originating, minority cultures, notably indigenous cultures and those living under colonial rule. Unavoidable when multiple cultures come together, cultural appropriation can include using other cultures' cultural and religious traditions, symbols and music. According to critics of the practice, cultural appropriation differs from acculturation, assimilation, or cultural exchange in that this appropriation is a form of colonialism: cultural elements are copied from a minority culture by members of a dominant culture, these elements are used outside of their original cultural context—sometimes against the expressly stated wishes of members of the originating culture.
The original meaning of these cultural elements is lost or distorted, such displays are viewed as disrespectful, or as a form of desecration, by members of the originating culture. Cultural elements which may have deep meaning to the original culture may be reduced to "exotic" fashion or toys by those from the dominant culture. Kjerstin Johnson has written that, when this is done, the imitator, "who does not experience that oppression is able to'play', temporarily, an'exotic' other, without experiencing any of the daily discriminations faced by other cultures." The African-American academic and journalist Greg Tate argues that appropriation and the "fetishising" of cultures, in fact, alienates those whose culture is being appropriated. The concept of cultural appropriation has been criticised; some writers on the topic note that the concept is misunderstood or misapplied by the general public, that charges of "cultural appropriation" are at times misapplied to situations such as eating food from a variety of cultures, or learning about different cultures.
Commentators who criticize the concept believe that the act of cultural appropriation does not meaningfully constitute a social harm, or that the term lacks conceptual coherence. Some argue that the term sets arbitrary limits on intellectual freedom and artists' self-expression, reinforces group divisions, or itself promotes a feeling of enmity or grievance, rather than liberation. Cultural appropriation can involve the use of ideas, artifacts, or other aspects of human-made visual or non-visual culture; as a concept, controversial in its applications, the propriety of cultural appropriation has been the subject of much debate. Opponents of cultural appropriation view many instances as wrongful appropriation when the subject culture is a minority culture or is subordinated in social, economic, or military status to the dominant culture or when there are other issues involved, such as a history of ethnic or racial conflict. Linda Martín Alcoff writes that this is seen in cultural outsiders' use of an oppressed culture's symbols or other cultural elements, such as music, spiritual ceremonies, modes of dress and social behaviour when these elements are trivialized and used for fashion, rather than respected within their original cultural context.
Opponents view the issues of colonialism and the difference between appropriation and mutual exchange as central to analyzing cultural appropriation. They argue that mutual exchange happens on an "even playing field", whereas appropriation involves pieces of an oppressed culture being taken out of context by a people who have oppressed those they are taking from, who lack the cultural context to properly understand, respect, or utilize these elements. A different view of cultural appropriation states the practice is "a conservative project", despite progressive roots; the goal is "to preserve in formaldehyde the content of an established culture and second tries prevent others from interacting with that culture." Proponents view it as benign or mutually beneficial, citing mutation, product diversity, technological diffusion, cultural empathy as among its benefits. For example, the film Star Wars used elements from Akira Kurosawa's The Hidden Fortress, which itself used elements from Shakespeare.
Fusion between cultures has produced such foods as American Chinese cuisine, modern Japanese sushi, bánh mì, each of, sometimes argued to reflect part of its respective culture's identity. Cultural appropriation is a recent subject of academic study; the term emerged in the 1980s, in discussions of post-colonial critiques of Western expansionism, though the concept had been explored earlier, such as in "Some General Observations on the Problems of Cultural Colonialism" by Kenneth Coutts‐Smith in 1976. Cultural and racial theorist George Lipsitz has used the term "strategic anti-essentialism" to refer to the calculated use of a cultural form, outside of one's own, to define oneself or one's group. Strategic anti-essentialism can be seen in both minority cultures and majority cultures, is not confined only to the use of the other. However, Lipsitz argues, when the majority culture attempts to strategically anti-essentialize itself by appropriating a minority culture, it must take great care to recognize the specific socio-historical circumstances and significance of these cultural forms so as not to perpetuate the existing majority vs. minority unequal power relations.
A common example of cultural appropriation is the adoption of the iconography of another culture, us
Blackface is a form of theatrical make-up used predominantly by non-black performers to represent a caricature of a black person. The practice gained popularity during the 19th century and contributed to the spread of racial stereotypes such as the "happy-go-lucky darky on the plantation" or the "dandified coon". By the middle of the century, blackface minstrel shows had become a distinctive American artform, translating formal works such as opera into popular terms for a general audience. Early in the 20th century, blackface branched off from the minstrel show and became a form in its own right. In the United States, blackface had fallen out of favor by the turn of the 21st century, is now considered offensive and disrespectful, though the practice continues in other countries. Blackface was a performance tradition in the American theater for 100 years beginning around 1830, it became popular elsewhere so in Britain, where the tradition lasted longer than in the U. S. occurring on primetime TV, most famously in The Black and White Minstrel Show, which ended in 1978, in Are You Being Served?'s Christmas specials in 1976 and in 1981.
In both the United States and Britain, blackface was most used in the minstrel performance tradition, which it both predated and outlasted. Early white performers in blackface used burnt cork and greasepaint or shoe polish to blacken their skin and exaggerate their lips wearing woolly wigs, tailcoats, or ragged clothes to complete the transformation. Black artists performed in blackface. Stereotypes embodied in the stock characters of blackface minstrels not only played a significant role in cementing and proliferating racist images and perceptions worldwide, but in popularizing black culture. In some quarters, the caricatures that were the legacy of blackface persist to the present day and are a cause of ongoing controversy. Another view is that "blackface is a form of cross-dressing in which one puts on the insignias of a sex, class, or race that stands in opposition to one's own."By the mid-20th century, changing attitudes about race and racism ended the prominence of blackface makeup used in performance in the U.
S. and elsewhere. Blackface in contemporary art remains in limited use as a theatrical device and is more used today as social commentary or satire; the most enduring effect of blackface is the precedent it established in the introduction of African-American culture to an international audience, albeit through a distorted lens. Blackface's appropriation and assimilation of African-American culture – as well as the inter-ethnic artistic collaborations that stemmed from it – were but a prologue to the lucrative packaging and dissemination of African-American cultural expression and its myriad derivative forms in today's world popular culture. There is no consensus about a single moment; the journalist and cultural commentator John Strausbaugh places it as part of a tradition of "displaying Blackness for the enjoyment and edification of white viewers" that dates back at least to 1441, when captive West Africans were displayed in Portugal. White people portrayed the black characters in the Elizabethan and Jacobean theater, most famously in Othello.
However and other plays of this era did not involve the emulation and caricature of "such supposed innate qualities of Blackness as inherent musicality, natural athleticism", etc. that Strausbaugh sees as crucial to blackface. Lewis Hallam, Jr. a white blackface actor of American Company fame, brought blackface in this more specific sense to prominence as a theatrical device in the United States when playing the role of "Mungo", an inebriated black man in The Padlock, a British play that premiered in New York City at the John Street Theatre on May 29, 1769. The play attracted notice, other performers adopted the style. From at least the 1810s, blackface clowns were popular in the United States. British actor Charles Mathews toured the U. S. in 1822–23, as a result added a "black" characterization to his repertoire of British regional types for his next show, A Trip to America, which included Mathews singing "Possum up a Gum Tree", a popular slave freedom song. Edwin Forrest played a plantation black in 1823, George Washington Dixon was building his stage career around blackface in 1828, but it was another white comic actor, Thomas D. Rice, who popularized blackface.
Rice introduced the song "Jump Jim Crow" accompanied by a dance in his stage act in 1828 and scored stardom with it by 1832. First on de heel tap, den on the toeEvery time I wheel about I jump Jim Crow. I wheel about and turn about an do just so. Rice traveled the U. S. performing under the stage name "Daddy Jim Crow". The name Jim Crow became attached to statutes that codified the reinstitution of segregation and discrimination after Reconstruction. In the 1830s and early 1840s, blackface performances mixed skits with comic songs and vigorous dances. Rice and his peers performed only in disreputable venues, but as blackface gained popularity they gained opportunities to perform as entr'actes in theatrical venues of a higher class. Stereotyped blackface characters developed: buffoonish, superstitious and lascivious characters, who stole, lied pathologically, mangled the English language. Early blackface minstrels were all male, so cross-dressing white men played black women who were portrayed as unappealingly and grotesquely mannish, in the matronly mammy mold, or as sexually provocative.
The 1830s American stage, where blackfa