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Analyse a cartoon - "racism"

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Racism


The Punch cartoon by “Nick” published in 1981 deals with the problem of inofficial discrimination out of racist motivations.
The place where the scene is placed is an office of an agency. In the foreground the back of a half-balded businessman with glasses can be seen. He sits in an armchair, surrounded by three telephones, they stand on his desk in front of him. It is obvious that this man has an important position in that agency, because he wears a suit and has many connections to the world through his three (!) telephones. This person leaves a very busy impression. He talks to a man, who stands in front of his desk. The second man has black coloured skin, so he seems so be an African. He wears a Superman costume. Although he takes a self-confident pose his facial expression shows disappointment and doupt.
In the background many pictures of several people are shown. This detail leads to the conclusion that the agency is a casting agency of the motion picture industry. It is plain to see that the African is applying for the role of the American hero Superman. Probably an advertisement for that job had been published before that scene takes place.
The text beneath the cartoon makes the scene understandably: “ I'm sorry- we were really looking for someone who can't fly.” These are the words of the businessman, his answer to the application of the African. It is clear that this is a lie. Who else would be more qualified for the role of Superman than an actor, who indeed is able to fly? The qualification of the actor would be perfect if – and this is what the cartoonist is intending to show – he were not black. The confirmation (“really”) gives his words an ironic touch, so the lie and the discrimination get a brutal taste of racism.
The facial expression of the actor gives a hint to his knowledge of the brazen lie and with that to his awareness of the true reasons for the agency's refusal. The racism is covered by the expertly lie of the businessman, so the actor can not defend himself officially. He is helpless, subjected to inofficial, but very direct racism.
Racism means attitudes, practices and other factors that disadvantage people because of their race, colour or ethnicity. Racism can be directed against any race, colour or ethnicity. The cartoonist draws the viewer's attention to the social reality, which shows that racial discrimination and intolerance are still an actual problem of communities, especially in the business world. Even if the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) and the Race Relations Act (1976) forbid obvious racism, xenophobic thoughts and ideas find their way to be realized. Official no one wants be have the repute of a racist, but those people, who are hateful and intolerant to people of other races, find a way to show their opinions nearly directly. Employers, for example, often cover behind other reasons when refusing a black applicant with better qualifications – as the cartoons shows. “Nick” demonstrates that, yet, the dream of a world free of racial hatred and bias remains is only half fulfilled.
Out of my own experiences, I know, the cartoonist's expression of reality is right. Prejudices, Xenophobia and hate towards people of other races is an actual and horrible problem. For example, there are people in Germany, who do not accept black doctors to operate them because they are afraid of cannibalism (!). Furthermore the results of the latest elections in Germany should alarm everybody, who understand, what national socialism and racism means in its consequences. As technology brings the peoples of the world closer together and political barriers tumble, racial discrimination, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance continue to ravage our societies. Horrors such as "ethnic cleansing" have emerged in recent years, while ideas of racial superiority have spread to new media like the Internet. Even globalization carries risks that can lead to exclusion and increased inequality, very often along racial and ethnic lines. Irrespective of its sources or reasons, racism is racism. Ignorance is no excuse. Insecurity is not justification – racism in all its forms should be uncompromisingly condemned.
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Aufgabe: Analysiere eine Karikatur zum Thema "Rassismus". Die Karikatur war vorgegeben. Ich konnte leider keine digitale Version auftreiben, aber mit der Beschreibung und der Analyse könnt ihr sicher was anfangen. (706 Wörter)
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06.06.2005 von unbekannt
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