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Why horror keeps creeping into black drama

Shows such as I May Destroy You, Atlanta and Insecure depict a wide spectrum of black life, from hilarity to mundanity – but all these shows, at times, also have an impending sense of doom. This feeling of horror, this looming sense of dread, is intentional, but it plays on the common tropes we’ve been conditioned to expect. Josh Toussaint-Strauss discusses why audiences expect bad things to happen to black characters and explores how a new generation of black creators are using horror to subvert these negative tropes. 

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Further reading:

Will it destroy us? Why horror always creeps in to black drama ►

Lanre Bakare ►

Dr Francesca Sobande ►

Awkward Black girls and postfeminist possibilities: representing millennial Black women on television in Chewing Gum and Insecure. Critical Studies in Television, 14(4): 435–450 ► 

Tananarive Due ►

Horror Noire ►

The Sunken Place: Black Horror course ►

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7 comments

  1. Avatar

    Racial tropes combined with contemporary horror themes and stereotypical notions that reinforces the perception that black lives are expendable. The shit sells and the producers and consumers are usually white, so nobody really cares to talk about these things. Poignant stuff this.

  2. Avatar

    5% of the population but you'd think it was 50% these days.

  3. Avatar

    Great point. We need more information like that. 😘

  4. Avatar

    Stop making it about race .

  5. Avatar

    Because it's never been done before. Black people want representation, and they are underrepresented in most genres of fiction. There are no black horror movies, and now there are finally political allegories in horror, but about blackness.

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    World Mayhem Organisation

    bring back desmonds.

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