african american comedy

#BlackTwitter Shows How #ThanksgivingWithBlackFamilies Really Is

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, #BlackTwitter came together as a family to discuss something other than fixing plates with the hilarious hashtag #ThanksgivingWithBlackFamilies.

From drunken aunties. 

To lack of etiquette and unknown guests.

To getting through an eternity-long grace and just being ready to eat.

Through comedy and commonality, the Black side of the Twittersphere highlights the annoying and entertaining occurances during this joyous occasion. Check out the #ThanksgivingWithBlackFamilies!

African American Humor: The Best Black Comedy from Slavery to Today (The Library of Black America series)

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 edited by Mel Watkins and foreword by Dick Gregory

This collection of anecdotes, tales, jokes, toasts, rhymes, satire, riffs, poems, stand-up sketches, and snaps documents the evolution of African American humor over the past two centuries. It includes routines and writings from such luminaries as Bert Williams, Butterbeans & Susie, Stepin Fetchit, Moms Mabley, Ralph Ellison, Langston Hughes, Redd Foxx, Ishmael Reed, Bill Cosby, Richard Pryor, Martin Lawrence, and Chris Rock. This anthology includes classic stage routines, literary examples, and witty quotations presented in their entirety.

On the Real Side: A History of African American Comedy

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 by Mel Watkins

This comprehensive history of black humor sets it in the context of American popular culture. Blackface minstrelsy, Stepin Fetchit, and the Amos ’n’ Andy show presented a distorted picture of African Americans; this book contrasts this image with the authentic underground humor of African Americans found in folktales, race records, and all-black shows and films. After generations of stereotypes, the underground humor finally emerged before the American public with Richard Pryor in the 1970s. But Pryor was not the first popular comic to present authentically black humor. Watkins offers surprising reassessments of such seminal figures as Fetchit, Bert Williams, Moms Mabley, and Redd Foxx, looking at how they paved the way for contemporary comics such as Whoopi Goldberg, Eddie Murphy, and Bill Cosby.