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Biko's ghost : the iconography of Black Consciousness / Shannen L. Hill

Catalog Data

Hill, Shannen L. 1964-  Search this
Biko, Steve 1946-1977  Search this
Black Consciousness Movement of South Africa  Search this
Physical description:
xxviii, 366 pages, [16] pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 21 cm
South Africa
Reviewed by Ciraj Rassool in African arts (Los Angeles) 49 (4) winter 2016, pages 94-95 (N1.A258 AFA).
Reviewed by Andries Walter Oliphant in De arte (Pretoria) 51 (1) 2016, pages 124-126 (N8.A34 A78 AFA).
Reviewed by Daniel Magaziner in Journal of African history (Cambridge, England) 58 (1) 2017, pages 169-170 (DT1.J858 AFA).
Reviewed by Kwanele Sosibo, "Biko book takes a few liberties," Mail and guardian Friday (Johannesburg, South Africa) September 15-21, 2017, page 3 (VF-- Artists--South Africa)
AFA copy 39088018047837 Gift from Janet Stanley.
Introduction: Let's Talk about Consciousness -- 1. Shaping Modern Black Culture in the 1970s -- 2. Of Icons and Inquests: "Steve Biko, God Be with You, BPC" -- 3. Contemplating Death: Artists and Abjection -- 4. Creating a Culture of Resistance -- 5. Silencing the Censors: Black Consciousness between the Lines in the 1980s -- 6. Transitions and Truths in a New Democracy -- 7. Museum, Monument, Marking: Black Consciousness in the New Millennium -- Epilogue: "After Such a Long Time His Life Is Still Dug Out" -- Acknowledgments: I Write What I Must
""When you say, 'Black is Beautiful,' what in fact you are saying. is: Man, you are okay as you are; begin to look upon yourself as a human being." With such statements, Stephen Biko became the voice of Black Consciousness. And with Biko's brutal death in the custody of the South African police, he became a martyr, an enduring symbol of the horrors of apartheid. Through the lens of visual culture, Biko's Ghost reveals how the man and the ideology he promoted have profoundly influenced liberation politics and race discourse--in South Africa and around the globe--ever since.Tracing the linked histories of Black Consciousness and its most famous proponent, Biko's Ghost explores the concepts of unity, ancestry, and action that lie at the heart of the ideology and the man. It challenges the dominant historical view of Black Consciousness as ineffectual or racially exclusive, suppressed on the one side by the apartheid regime and on the other by the African National Congress.Engaging theories of trauma and representation, and icon and ideology, Shannen L. Hill considers the martyred Biko as an embattled icon, his image portrayals assuming different shapes and political meanings in different hands. So, too, does she illuminate how Black Consciousness worked behind the scenes throughout the 1980s, a decade of heightened popular unrest and state censorship. She shows how--in streams of imagery that continue to multiply nearly forty years on--Biko's visage and the ongoing life of Black Consciousness served as instruments through which artists could combat the abuses of apartheid and unsettle the "rainbow nation" that followed. "-- Provided by publisher.
Black people in art  Search this
Black people in popular culture  Search this
Art and social action  Search this
Race relations  Search this
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Smithsonian Libraries