The C.O.W.S. THE DELECTABLE NEGRO Part 8

Friday, March 17th 8:00PM Eastern/ 5:00PM Pacific

The Context of White Supremacy hosts the eighth study session on Vincent Woodard’s The Delectable Negro: Human Consumption and Homoeroticism within US Slave Culture. Mr. Woodard died in 2008, but his book was posthumously published in 2014. University of Texas A&M’s Dr. Tommy J. Curry strongly recommended this text on one his earliest visits to The C.O.W.S. – stressing the importance of Woodard’s analysis of the rape of black males. Last week’s segment returned to Nat Turner’s 1831 insurrection. The text explores William Styron’s 1967 dishonest portrayal of Turner – depicting him engaged in “homosexual” activity. Gus detected a willingness to exonerate the deceitful activity of Styron while severely chastising black males who rightly rejected Styron’s work. Woodard explicitly and repeatedly accuses 1960’s black males of being unable or unwilling to accept that homoerotic activity was a part of plantation life. A significant amount of the chapter diverted to examine James Baldwin’s work, his friendship with Styron, and his treatment by other black people. Many of the critiques seem similar to 21st century accusations that black people are uniquely “homophobic.” The Delectable Negro helps us understand modern events like convicted serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, the rape and murder of Dione Payne, and “black man cookies“.

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