Making Movies Black: The Hollywood Message Movie from World War II to the Civil Rights Era

Paperback | April 30, 1999

byThomas Cripps

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This is the second volume of Thomas Cripps's definitive history of African-Americans in Hollywood. It covers the period from World War II through the civil rights movement of the 1960s, examining this period through the prism of popular culture. Making Movies Black shows how moviesanticipated and helped form America's changing ideas about race. Cripps contends that from the liberal rhetoric of the war years--marked as it was by the propaganda catchwords brotherhood and tolerance--came movies that defined a new African-American presence both in film and in American society atlarge. He argues that the war years, more than any previous era, gave African-American activists access to centers of cultural influence and power in both Washington and Hollywood. Among the results were an expanded black imagery on the screen during the war--in combat movies such as Bataan, Crash Dive, and Sahara; musicals such as Stormy Weather and Cabin in the Sky; and government propaganda films such as The Negro Soldier and Wings for this Man (narrated by RonaldReagan!). After the war, the ideologies of both black activism and integrationism persisted, resulting in the 'message movie' era of Pinky, Home of the Brave, and No Way Out, a form of racial politics that anticipated the goals of the Civil Rights Movement. Delving into previously inaccessible records of major Hollywood studios, among them Warner Bros., RKO, and 20th Century-Fox, as well as records of the Office of War Information in the National Archives, and records of the NAACP, and interviews with survivors of the era, Cripps reveals thestruggle of both lesser known black filmmakers like Carlton Moss and major figures such as Sidney Poitier. More than a narrative history, Making Movies Black reaches beyond the screen itself with sixty photographs, many never before published, which illustrate the mood of the time. Revealing the social impact of the classical Hollywood film, Making Movies Black is the perfect book for thoseinterested in the changing racial climate in post-World War II American life.

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From Our Editors

Revealing the social impact of the classical Hollywood film, this book is essential reading for those interested in the changing racial climate in post-World War II American life.

From the Publisher

This is the second volume of Thomas Cripps's definitive history of African-Americans in Hollywood. It covers the period from World War II through the civil rights movement of the 1960s, examining this period through the prism of popular culture. Making Movies Black shows how moviesanticipated and helped form America's changing ideas ...

From the Jacket

Revealing the social impact of the classical Hollywood film, this book is essential reading for those interested in the changing racial climate in post-World War II American life.

Thomas Cripps is at Morgan State University.

other books by Thomas Cripps

Slow Fade to Black
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$26.99$34.99list pricesave 22%
Slow Fade to Black
Slow Fade to Black

Kobo ebook|Feb 3 1977

$34.99

Format:PaperbackDimensions:400 pages, 9.25 × 6.14 × 0.94 inPublished:April 30, 1999Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195076699

ISBN - 13:9780195076691

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From Our Editors

Revealing the social impact of the classical Hollywood film, this book is essential reading for those interested in the changing racial climate in post-World War II American life.

Editorial Reviews

"A breathtakingly detailed cultural history. Key to understanding one of the most profound institutional methods by which racial misconceptions were fostered, and yet somehow used as a bridge toward positive accomplishment."--James Robert Saunders, Purdue University