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Birth of An Industry: Blackface Minstrelsy and the Rise of American Animation

Nicholas Sammond, Author
Conclusion, page 1 of 19
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Conclusion, Page 268

Popular black blackface minstrels of the early twentieth century worked on both the stage and screen, and they were part of the same racial matrix that produced "native" exhibits at world's fairs, jungle-themed nightclubs, and the fantastic African-themed,  an all-black productions staged by Bert Williams and George and Ada Overton Walker, such as In Dahomey (1902), Bandana Land (1907) and Shuffle Along (1921).  (A new production of Shuffle Along, choreographed by Savion Glover, will appear in 2016.)

Animation did not just borrow from these minstrel traditions, it was a popular form of mass entertainment that actively participated in those traditions, with the cartoon character continuing to embody fantastic meanings of blackness. 
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