FACING BLACKNESS (2015)
Media and Minstrelsy in Spike Lee's Bamboozled
by Ashley Clark
Facing Blackness: Media and Minstrelsy in Spike Lee's Bamboozled by Ashley Clark is a monograph that explores Bamboozled, which, released in 2000 to controversy and mixed reviews, follows a frustrated black TV producer on his quest to create a show so offensive it will get him fired. The result is a modern-day minstrel show that, contrary to expectations, becomes a massive hit. A satire of race, media, celebrity, and American history, Bamboozled has conventionally been regarded as one of Lee's lesser efforts, though it now appears to be one of his most prescient and radical. In this reappraisal of the film for its 15th anniversary, film critic Ashley Clark makes the case for Bamboozled as one of Lee's most rich and enduring works, and as one of the most important satires of American culture in this young century.
Ashley Clark is a journalist and film programmer from London, based in Jersey City, USA.
"Clark's in-depth analysis of Bamboozled brilliantly validates and elucidates the importance of a forgotten cinematic treasure. This is essential reading for anyone interested in black film, black history, or America's dark past."—Kaleem Aftab, author of Spike Lee: That's My Story and I'm Sticking to It