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The Strange Career of the Voting Rights Act

The Strange Career of the Voting Rights Act A scene from Selma. Atsushi Nishijima/Paramount Pictures 579201 NLFXXX10.1177/1095796015579201New Labor ForumReed research-article2015 New Labor Forum 2015, Vol. 24(2) 32 –41 The Strange Career of the Copyright © 2015, The Author(s) DOI: 10.1177/1095796015579201 nlf.sagepub.com Voting Rights Act: Selma in Fact and Fiction Adolph Reed Jr. Keywords elections, Democratic Party, equality, labor, neoliberalism, racism, working class The only thing that hasn’t changed about History is beside the point for this potted narra- black politics since 1965 is how we think tive, as is art incidentally. about it. The contemporary black —Willie Legette (ca. 1999) professional-managerial class converges [around the] reduction Ava DuVernay’s film Selma has generated yet of politics to a narrative of racial another wave of mass-mediated debate over triumph that projects “positive cinematic representation of black Americans’ historical experience of racial injustice. The images” of black accomplishment. controversy’s logic is at this point familiar, nearly clichéd. DuVernay and others have DuVernay threw the cat out of the bag in dis- responded to complaints about the film’s his- cussing her characterization of Johnson’s role torical accuracy, particularly in its portrayal of in the struggle for the Voting Rights Act (VRA). Lyndon Johnson, with invocations of artistic The original script portrayed http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png New Labor Forum SAGE

The Strange Career of the Voting Rights Act

New Labor Forum , Volume 24 (2): 10 – May 1, 2015

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© 2015, The Author(s)
ISSN
1095-7960
eISSN
1557-2978
DOI
10.1177/1095796015579201
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

A scene from Selma. Atsushi Nishijima/Paramount Pictures 579201 NLFXXX10.1177/1095796015579201New Labor ForumReed research-article2015 New Labor Forum 2015, Vol. 24(2) 32 –41 The Strange Career of the Copyright © 2015, The Author(s) DOI: 10.1177/1095796015579201 nlf.sagepub.com Voting Rights Act: Selma in Fact and Fiction Adolph Reed Jr. Keywords elections, Democratic Party, equality, labor, neoliberalism, racism, working class The only thing that hasn’t changed about History is beside the point for this potted narra- black politics since 1965 is how we think tive, as is art incidentally. about it. The contemporary black —Willie Legette (ca. 1999) professional-managerial class converges [around the] reduction Ava DuVernay’s film Selma has generated yet of politics to a narrative of racial another wave of mass-mediated debate over triumph that projects “positive cinematic representation of black Americans’ historical experience of racial injustice. The images” of black accomplishment. controversy’s logic is at this point familiar, nearly clichéd. DuVernay and others have DuVernay threw the cat out of the bag in dis- responded to complaints about the film’s his- cussing her characterization of Johnson’s role torical accuracy, particularly in its portrayal of in the struggle for the Voting Rights Act (VRA). Lyndon Johnson, with invocations of artistic The original script portrayed

Journal

New Labor ForumSAGE

Published: May 1, 2015

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