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Can we laugh about this? Race on film
I spent an hour with the Film Club charity in Battersea Park School in South London today,(I'm a trustee) discussing the treatment of race and racism on film. It was Anti-Racism Day, apparently. I chose clips from a sample of my favourite films and TV shows growing up, with some trepidation. I may be a Wandsworth girl by birth, but what would today's school children, many relatively recently arrived from Eastern European and African backgrounds, make of Peter Sellers blacked up as a bumbling Indian actor, or Mind Your Language's stereotypes? Would what a British Asian family thought OK in the 1970s and 80s prove timeless or merely shockingly dated? Imitation of Life (1959) Douglas Sirk was himself a refugee from Nazi Germany. He was stunned by the segregation of the Land of the Free. And like Meera Syal, who once chose this as a favourite film at a BFI screening, I was deeply disturbed as a young child when I first stumbled across this deeply subversive film about American racism,