From Deflection to Deconstruction : The Transformation of Ishmael Reed's Satire in Juice!



Year of publication 2015
Type Chapter of a book
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description The chapter addresses Ishmael Reed's use of satire to question media circulated stereotypes of African Americans. His latest novel, Juice! (2011) describes how its African American characters perceive the media coverage of the OJ Simpson trial and the stereotypes that the 1994-95 trial aroused against African Americans in general and OJ in particular. Salamoun investigates how the novel's protagonist uses satire to question the credibility of the media circulated stereotypes. He shows that Reed's satire in Juice! is based on logical argumentation that reveals the farfetched nature of such stereotypes. It thus differs from his early satire which reveals the hypocrisy of white characters who break the norms of sexual conduct yet blame African Americans of doing so. Consequently, Salamoun argues that Reed's post-1992 satire has changed in two ways. First, it is both more mature and palatable as its primary source is no longer the inappropriate sexuality of white characters. Second, it has become more post-racial as it deconstructs stereotypes expressed by both white and African American characters whereas Reed's early satire attacks primarily white characters.
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