Amid Trump’s national anthem rhetoric, Spike Lee’s latest film and Boots Riley’s ‘Sorry to Bother You’ reinforce satire as the preferred genre of the oppressed, writes the NBA Hall-of-Famer and Hollywood Reporter cultural columnist.
laves are generally expected to sing as well as to work,” observed ex-slave-turned-abolitionist Frederick Douglass. To the slave owners, singing slaves would drown out their own cruelty and oppression, clothe them in a coerced choir of decency. But it wasn’t enough that the slaves had to sing, they had to sing their oppressor’s feel-good songs that are summed up in the Porgy and Bess refrain of “I’ve got plenty of nothin’,” and nothin’s plenty for me.”
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