Jews & the Racism of Hollywood

Lester D. Friedman, Hollywood’s Image of the Jew:  “Today, most people associate the blackface tradition with minstrel shows, and more particularly with Al Jolson. In actuality, many Jewish performers gained early and continued success using it. Sophie Tucker was billed as the ‘World Renowned Coon Shouter’ or more euphemistically as the ‘Manipulator of Coon Melodies.’ Eddie Cantor played Salome in drag and blackface, while George Burns often toured with an even more comically stylized blackface than Jolson’s. Later George Jessel often joined Eddie Cantor on stage in various blackface routines…Indeed, it is too easy to ignore the derogatory aspects of such activities, the unconscious racism accepted and nourished by such cruel parodies, by citing historical contexts. The undisguised elements of ridicule in such blackface portrayals by Jews mimicking the outlandish stereotypes of blacks now looks suspiciously like one group’s desperate need to assert its own superiority by mimicking another. Such a motivation while perhaps unconscious is nonetheless hard to ignore.”

Jews and Hollywood images of Blacks

Anti-Defamation League Charter: “For a number of years a tendency has manifested itself in American life toward the caricaturing and defaming of Jews on the stage, in moving pictures. The effect of this on the unthinking public has been to create an untrue and injurious impression of an entire people and to expose the Jew to undeserved contempt, and ridicule. The caricatures center around some idiosyncrasy of the few which, by the thoughtless public, is often taken as a pivotal characteristic of the entire people…”

Neal Gabler Author of An Empire of Their Own: How the Jews invented Hollywood: “What is amazing is the extent to which they succeeded in promulgating this fiction throughout the world. By making a ‘shadow’ America, one which idealized every old glorifying bromide about the country, the Hollywood Jews created a powerful cluster of images and ideas-so powerful that, in a sense, they colonized the American imagination. . . . Ultimately, American values came to be defined largely by the movies the Jews made.”

Rob Reiner, Film Director 1992: “It’s all run by Jews, even Disney. That’s funny, because Walt Disney was a terrible reactionary. If he found out that Jeffrey Katzenberg were running his company, he’d be spinning in his grave. That’s a wonderful bit of poetic justice.”

 

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