Perspectives on Race

A Discussion about Events Concerning Race

Racism in Cartoons

with 2 comments

I was watching cartoons today, mainly on adult swim and I noticed that there are not a lot of ethnic cartoon characters. Cartoon characters are overwhelmingly white, or perceived as white as in the instance of the Simpsons, who are literally yellow but objectively white. As I pondered this over, I could not think of more than two specific cartoons that had non-white characters. This extends to newspaper cartoons and pretty much any form of animation. There are some cartoon characters that are ethnic/races other than white, but they are few are far in between and they, percentage wise, do not even get close to properly representing the proportion of minorities in American society.  Can anyone else think of more than two non-white cartoon characters (excluding cartoons such as Fat Albert or the Boondocks which have a majorly minority cast)? Is there a reason for this phenomenon? (Such as technical reasons or drawing difficulties) Or is it merely racist or ignorant? Even when there are non-white cartoon characters, they minorities represented are extremely stereotypical or racially represented in a displeasing manner. Apparently, respectful, good minority cartoons are rare, if they exist at all.


Written by victorianelson

October 18, 2009 at 10:22 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. Most cartoons these days cater to mainstream American society which has always been in varying degrees synonymous with white culture. Minorities for the most part have usually been the stereotypical token side characters on many popular American cartoons like Apu on the Simpsons and Cleveland in Family Guy because these shows were aimed at a primarily white audience.

    In recent years, however, there has been a rise in mainstream minority inspired cartoons like Dora the Explorer and the newly aired Cleveland Show (a spin off of Family Guy). I think this can be attributed to the growing awareness and acceptance of the various groups in society. As more and more groups become integrated into society, the more of these cartoons that we are going to see.


    October 19, 2009 at 9:48 pm

  2. In my opinion, there has been a huge increase of ethic cartoons. More than ever seen before. For instance: anime cartoons that feature Japanese characters, Dora the Explorer, Dragon Tales, and The Proud Family. I would consider these cartoons not stereotypical, but I believe that they are racially represented.


    October 24, 2009 at 11:09 pm

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