respectability politics

the history of respectability politics. NBNBNB


Cargo-Cult-Plane a plane built of wood by a Pacific Islander cargo cult in hopes of attracting cargo planes, like those that came during the Second World War.

Respectability politics (1895- ) is a cargo cult founded by middle-class Black Americans. It says that the purpose of life is getting cargo (material wealth, “success”) and the key to that is to act more like White Americans – to dress like them, talk like them, etc. It is why, for example, some people say that sagging pants are holding Black people back.

Apostles: Booker T. Washington, Don Lemon, Bill Cosby, Barack Obama, Chris Rock in “Niggas vs Black People”.

Glory days: 1895 to 1955, from Booker T. Washington’s Atlanta Compromise to the murder of Emmett Till. Its low point was from 1965 to 1984, from Carmichael to Cosby. It seems to be a reaction to racial nadirs, periods of White racist backlash against…

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