Racial Representation in Artistic Platforms : A Diversity Luxury or a Humanitarian Must


Art -per say- under all its visual, auditory, and performing manifestations, is vitally a recreation of universal interactions based on human experience. From cinema, music, theatre, paintings, to sculptures it is the product of an  already established subjective history. Since that history embodies the individual experience that reflects the influences of multiple cultural contexts that constitute our blue globe and that are undergone in one’s entourage, those produced artifacts can’t help but undeniably be a « reincarnation » of a concrete society. The human race, to begin with, is everything but a homogenous creation. Our world is an all inclusive heterogeneous ensemble of multiple races and origins and backgrounds that are encompassed in the melting pot that is « Humanity ». Hence, its productions should only be, evidently, advocating for all diverse kinds of source material.

Unfortunately, as history speaks for itself, such equality has not necessarily been as in reach as it should be. Following the desolating fight for racial equality against segregation around the world, such as the abolishment of slavery in Europe that led to ending the slave trade from Africa in the early 1800s, and the Selma to Montgomery March in the U.S.A in the 1960s, people of color have been fighting ever since to attain their civil rights. However, nowadays, after Human Rights accorded the basic civil rights to people of color -though not fully- media is still the modern technology monster that portrays marginalized categories according to power institutions.

[x_image type= »none » float= »none » src= »http://www.poketudiant.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/salma.png » title= » »Selma to Montgomery March » » info= »popover » info_place= »top » info_trigger= »hover »]
« Selma to Montgomery March »
[x_image type= »none » float= »none » src= »http://www.poketudiant.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/africabritish.png » title= »Painting representing slave sales practiced in Africa by the British » info= »popover » info_place= »top » info_trigger= »hover »]
« Painting representing slave sales practiced in Africa by the British »

Artists, as diverse as they may be, are still not given equal opportunities to showcase their artifacts. As a matter of illustration, there has been many complaints about diverse casting in international movies. Most of the main roles leading influential and widely famous films are criticized as « mainly white dominant », or even more staggering, many actors casted for different ethnicities never match the original ethnicity of the character for the sake of « the star system ». The casting process is solely based on audience’s attraction dictated by big corporations aka studios on the expense of racial integrity. Even in the 2016 Oscars’ ceremony, The Academy of  Motion Picture Arts and Sciences received a great deal of backlash due to the lack of diversity in critically acclaimed films nominated that year. The host, Chris Rock, who is a an actor and comedian of color, used the platform to hint at the problem with satire. His speech included jokes such as “Man, I counted at least 15 black people in that montage”; “I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards.”; and “You realize if they nominated hosts, I wouldn’t even get this job! You’d all be watching Neil Patrick Harris right now.”

[x_image type= »none » float= »none » src= »http://www.poketudiant.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Chris-Rock.png » title= »Chris Rock hosting the 2016 Oscars’ ceremony » info= »popover » info_place= »top » info_trigger= »hover »]
« Chris Rock hosting the 2016 Oscars »

Due to the current violent and racist events in the world that go against all human principles, if there is a time where racial representation and justice should be portrayed to advocate for equality and give all different kinds of people a common ground of relatability, it is now.

« What is an artist without an audience ? »  is quite a postmodern concept on how striping the possibility of multiple representations away from a work of art automatically puts the existence of such art into question. The whole purpose of art is to interpellate an audience, communicate and entertain members of a shared or separate community of people, in order to transcend feelings, emotions and experiences that could be relatable on a certain level as a human bonding representation.

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Anissa Bouhmadi
I'm Anissa Bouhmadi. A 20 year old Cultural Studies graduate from Rabat. I'm still in the process of testing the waters and exploring the possibilities regarding future career and education plans. Though, I have a passion for creative writing, journalism, politics, cultures and international relations, social services, and all forms of art.


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