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With the timely release of Black Panther this weekend during Black History Month, many are celebrating and reflecting on what representation in film and media means to African Americans. As Carvell Wallace wrote in a recent New York Times Magazine piece, “We have for centuries sought to either find or create a promised land where we would be untroubled by the criminal horrors of our American existence.”¹

To facilitate conversations on the history of representation in media for African Americans, and to gain a better understanding of the need for more African American representation in film, check out the Humanities E-Book titles below. These title span a range of topics, from the portrayal of African American urban experiences in film, a review of black film criticism, and the recent history of African American representation on television.

  1. (Wallace, Carvell. “Why ‘Black Panther’ Is a Defining Moment for Black America.” New York Times Magazine, 12 Feb. 2018,

Black African Cinema

by Nwachukwu Frank Ukadike, University of California Press

Migrating to the Movies: Cinema and Black Urban Modernity

by Jacqueline Najuma Stewart, University of California Press

Redefining Black Film

by Mark Reid, University of California Press

Star Trek and History: Race-ing Toward a White Future

by Daniel Bernardi, Rutgers University Press

Laughing Mad: The Black Comic Persona in Post-Soul America

by Bambi Haggins, Rutgers University Press

Fire and Desire: Mixed-Race Movies in the Silent Era

by Jane Gaines, University of Chicago Press