Black Women and Sexuality in U.S. Popular Culture Pt. 1

A 57 Second Lecture

Lecture Transcript

I’m Nikki Lane, and I’m going to be your professor.

**Sing lyrics to Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble”**

If you want to understand Beyoncé’s work, then you need to understand some things about how black women’s sexuality. I’ll introduce you to three concepts that I think will help you understand the work that Beyonce and people like Beyonce are doing when they’re representing black women’s sexuality.

The first is the concept of “racialized sexuality.” The term placed Foucault’s findings in History of Sexuality in conversation with racial history in the U.S. When we do this we see that black women’s sexuality had been warped in the public sphere and in the private sphere, by racist ideas about black women’s supposed excessive sexuality.

Suggested Reading

“Sexuality on/of the Racial Border: Foucault, Wright, and the Articulation of ‘Racialized Sexuality,’ in Discourses of Sexuality: From Aristotle to AIDS, ed. Domna Stanton, Ann Arbor, Univ. of Michigan Press, 1992, pp. 94-116.

Ferguson, Roderick A. “Of Our Normative Strivings: African American Studies and the Histories of Sexuality.” Social Text 23(3-4), 2005, pp. 85-100.