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Spectacularized and branded digital (re)presentations of Black people and Blackness

Sobande, Francesca 2021. Spectacularized and branded digital (re)presentations of Black people and Blackness. Television and New Media 22 (2) , pp. 131-146. 10.1177/1527476420983745

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Digital racism and the online experiences of Black people have been foregrounded in vital contemporary research, particularly Black scholarship and critical race and digital studies. As digital developments occur rapidly there is a need for work which theorizes recent expressions of digital anti-Blackness, including since increased marketing industry interest in the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement in 2020. This paper explores digital racism related to online (re)presentations of Black people and associated racist marketplace logics, digital practices, and (re)mediations of Blackness in the service of brands. Focusing on computer-generated imagery (CGI) racialized online influencers, the spectacularization of Black pain and lives, digital marketing approaches, and digital Blackface, this work contextualizes anti-Black digital racism by reflecting on its connection to centuries of white supremacy and often under-investigated racial capitalism. Overall, this work examines the shape-shifting nature of anti-Black digital racism and commercial components of it which are impacted by intersecting oppressions.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Journalism, Media and Culture
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 1527-4764
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 10 December 2020
Date of Acceptance: 6 December 2020
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2021 11:44

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