Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Womanist Musings-An All White Emmys

'Emmy Award' photo (c) 2006, itupictures - license:
If you wonder why Latino and African-Americans have their own awards shows to honor their people, it's because far too often the big awards shows become boringly drawn out celebrations of whiteness.

Renee of Womanist Musings touched upon that in her critique of Sunday's Emmy Awards in which once again, POC's were nominated (and very few of them) but went home empty handed.

Okay, now it's time for me to give you a taste of what she had to say about the just concluded Emmy's


It would have been bad enough if the erasure of actors of colour were simply this year's Emmys, but the truth of the matter is that these award shows have a long history of this exclusionary behaviour. There are still categories which no Black actor has ever won (this in supposedly post racial America).

If Esposito had won Best Supporting Actor in a Drama for "Breaking Bad," or if Rudolph had won the Comedy Guest Actress Award for "Saturday Night Live," they would have become the first black performers to win in their respective categories ever. Cheadle would have become only the second African-American in history to win Best Lead Actor in a Comedy for "House of Lies." Elba was nominated for Lead Actor in a Movie/Mini for "Luther" and Devine for Guest Actress in a Drama for "Grey's Anatomy." The news isn't as shocking considering only 5 percent of black actors have won awards in the 63 years of the Emmys. [source]
When this sort of issue is brought up, it is often suggested that we focus on our own awards, but this is not a solution.  Award shows like the Emmys and the Oscars portend to represent the entire industry but that is certainly not what they are doing.  What we need to advance is mainstream inclusion, not special side projects; separate is not equal, as we have seen over the decades. Year after year, what is presented as inclusion, is nothing more than yet another extravagant display of White hegemony.What we have been offered are crumbs from the masters table and this will never be acceptable.  Even with the population demographics shifting, Whiteness still refuses to loosen its hold on power. If they are not going to award the work of actors of colour, they might as well rename the show to the White Emmy awards because the exclusion is obvious to anyone watching.


You can read the rest of Renee's article by clicking on the link.

No comments: