Date of Award

2019

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Graduate Group

English

First Advisor

Herman Beavers

Second Advisor

Salamishah Tillet

Abstract

This dissertation examines the rise of satire within twenty-first century African American literature and culture alongside current debates of post Blackness. My work reveals how African American artists strategically deploy satire as a response to a neoliberal colorblindness that maintains de facto inequalities while presenting a triumphalist narrative of the Civil Rights Movement’s dismantling of Jim Crow. As a Black feminist scholar, I read satire through the lens of intersectionality to contemplate why twenty-first century cultural responses to a political, social, and economic climate of colorblindness necessitate not only a critique of interracial stereotypes of Black identity, but also intraracial ones. The recent innovations of Black novelists, playwrights, and new media producers, I argue, have evolved out of not only Black feminist theory, but also Black women artists’ ability to reflect our absurdly post moment—post-Civil Rights, “post racial,” post Black, post Obama, “post truth.” I contend that satire responds to the paradox of twenty-first century Black individualism and collectivism that arises out of outdated political and cultural methods used to address contemporary issues.

Embargoed

Available to all on Monday, September 26, 2022

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