Sign in or register
for additional privileges

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

Nicholas Sammond, Author

You appear to be using an older verion of Internet Explorer. For the best experience please upgrade your IE version or switch to a another web browser.

Labor, Page 110

This Out of the Inkwell cartoon from 1927 features the continuing Fleischer character Ko-Ko the Clown, who appears to draw himself and then battle with his drawn environment—a self-referential trope in early animation in which creations were made to rebel against their makers. 

Ko-Ko travels through time to 1999, when everything is automated. Eventually, a machine creates a wife and children for  Ko-Ko, who is unwilling to settle down; his enraged wife rips the clown to shreds and tosses the fragments into Max's "real" cinematic space. Max takes the paper shreds and creates two real women, ready to clean up the day's mess by putting it all back into the inkwell. 

Early animated characters often performed a fantasy of seeming autonomy, drawn by the animators only to be punished and constrained by their "masters" for their misdeeds. This sort of rebellion was a key characteristic of the blackface minstrel. 
Comment on this page

Discussion of "Labor, Page 110"

Add your voice to this discussion.

Checking your signed in status ...

Previous page on path Labor, page 9 of 21 Next page on path

Related:  Race, Page 235Performance, Page 84Conclusion, Page 292Race, Page 253Conclusion, Page 291Race, Page 258Labor, Page 88Race, Page 230Race, Page 231Labor, Page 98Introduction, Page 21Space, Page 175Conclusion, Page 289Race, Page 206Space, Page 190Labor, Page 109Race, Page 220Labor, Page 101Space, Page 152Performance, Page 52Labor, Page 123Race, Page 251Space, Page 146Performance, Page 45Space, Page 194Performance, Page 46Space, Page 181Labor, Page 113Labor, Page 133Race, Page 254Space, Page 187Performance, Page 74Labor, Page 122Labor, Page 129Conclusion, Page 304Performance, Page 72Space, Page 148Labor, Page 96Space, Page 189Space, Page 172Introduction, Page 14Space, Page 150Race, Page 247Race, Page 225Performance, Page 44Performance, Page 54Race, Page 232Conclusion, Page 286Space, Page 177Introduction, Page 29Race, Page 239Space, Page 184Space, Page 191Performance, Page 50Performance, Page 82Space, Page 165Performance, Page 77Race, Page 229Race, Page 252Performance, Page 34Labor, Page 112Performance, Page 47Introduction, Page 2Space, Page 143Labor, Page 128Space, Page 178Conclusion, Page 296Conclusion, Page 290Space, Page 141Space, Page 193Space, Page 197Space, Page 182Race, Page 261Space, Page 138Labor, Page 119Introduction, Page 30Conclusion, Page 302Performance, Page 60Race, Page 224Conclusion, Page 275Race, Page 221Conclusion, Page 298Introduction, Page 6Space, Page 155Space, Page 188Labor, Page 97Performance, Page 43Conclusion, Page 300Performance, Page 42Conclusion, Page 284Race, Page 248Conclusion, Page 278Introduction, Page 23Conclusion, Page 273Space, Page 183Introduction, Page 4Space, Page 156Performance, Page 35Labor, Page 132Space, Page 162Race, Page 204Space, Page 163Introduction, Page 1Space, Page 170Race, Page 213Conclusion, Page 303Performance, Page 41Performance, Page 70