Skip to main content

Blackface, Disguise and Invisibility in the Reception of The Birth of a Nation

  • Chapter
  • First Online:
In the Shadow of The Birth of a Nation
  • 197 Accesses

Abstract

This chapter explores a question of audience perception in the light of the divergence between interpretative accounts of films as texts and social histories of cinema as cultural institution and as experience. Focusing on one scene in The Birth of a Nation in which the disguise of blackface is incorporated into the film as a plot device, it examines the evidence of how the film’s contemporary audiences might have perceived its mode of Black representation.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this chapter

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Chapter
USD 29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
eBook
USD 109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD 139.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book
USD 139.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Institutional subscriptions

Similar content being viewed by others

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Richard Maltby .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

Copyright information

© 2023 The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Maltby, R. (2023). Blackface, Disguise and Invisibility in the Reception of The Birth of a Nation. In: Stokes, M., McEwan, P. (eds) In the Shadow of The Birth of a Nation. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-04737-4_3

Download citation

Publish with us

Policies and ethics