Marvin McAllister is Associate Professor of English and African American Studies at the University of South Carolina-Columbia. He has published two books on African American theater and performance, both with the University of North Carolina Press: “White People Do Not Know How To Behave At Entertainments Designed For Ladies and Gentlemen of Colour:” William Brown’s African and American Theater (2003) and Whiting Up: Whiteface Minstrels and Stage Europeans in African AmericanPerformance (2011).
In Birth of an Industry, Nicholas Sammond traces “the connections between the animated blackface minstrel, the industrialization of the art of animation, and fantasies of resistant labor” (xii). His core argument is that early animators developed unruly, cartoon minstrels in response to their increasingly depersonalized workplace. On a broader scale, the project works to situate animation within “a larger and longer history of racial iconography and taxonomy in the United States” (4). To make his case Sammond navigates a historically grounded racial matrix of minstrel shows, vaudeville acts, as well as other complex and contradictory representational forums.