University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
The Student Teachers Anti-Racism Society (STARS) promotes anti-racism education at the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan through the support of the College. We work collaboratively to understand, identify, and address individual and systemic racism and its interlocking forms of oppression based on gender, sexuality, ability, class, religion and other socially constructed categories. We believe that anti-racist and decolonizing education, when woven together, can create humanizing and emancipatory change for everyone.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Using Comedy to Confront Racism: Video Resources

This post comes from a handout distributed by Sheelah McLean after her STARS presentation on January 27, 2010 called Using Comedy to Confront Racism. Sheelah continues to stress the importance of understanding how comedy can be used to disrupt racism or to (perhaps unknowingly) perpetuate and contribute to racism. There are sometimes no clear answers. Thank you for all of the excellent resources Sheelah!!
Those of us who want to engage in Anti-racist Anti-oppressive education should use any tool at our disposal to understand racism. The clips that are highlighted touch on some of the consequences of racial oppression for people of color. Each clip requires a lot of time to deconstruct and understand. The stereotypes that these comedians play on, work to question racist ideologies and our assumptions about what race means. These comedians use humor to validate a history of violent racial oppression that constructs people of color as violent and inferior, and privileges white people. While this humor can help us to acknowledge racism, it is also important for us to validate the pain and anger that rightfully exists among people who face systemic racial oppression. The clips can be used to open a space to talk about the reality of racism here in North America, but there is much more we must do to fight racism.
- Sheelah McLean
The scene from Smoke Signals on the bus: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJUjwJfjd80&feature=related

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