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Dark Designs and Visual Culture Paperback – December 6, 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Duke University Press Books; 1st edition (December 6, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0822334135
  • ISBN-13: 978-0822334132
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,987,697 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Dark Designs and Visual Culture is a remarkable compilation of images, self-reflexive essays, and other critical works. It demonstrates Michele Wallace’s mastery of cultural criticism and indicates her interaction with American and African American visual culture during the past thirty years. A writer of extraordinary talent, she wields an ever sharpened insight and wit.”—Deborah Willis


“I can hardly think of a living critic who is as courageous as Michele Wallace—she says things no one else dares to—and this collection proves just how consistent her bravery has been over the years.”—Andrew Ross


“Michele Wallace has long been one of the most insightful and brave writers dealing with popular culture in this country. Her latest work continues that tradition of courage and wit.”—Nelson George

About the Author

Michele Wallace is Visiting Professor of Africana Studies at Cornell University. She is the author of Invisibility Blues: From Pop to Theory and Black Macho and the Myth of the Superwoman. She has written for numerous popular and scholarly publications, including The Village Voice, The New York Times, Emerge, Aperture, Ms., October, and Renaissance Noire.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Antonio on January 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
I read this collection of essays last summer, and I'm impressed with Wallace's balanced analyses of popular culture and cinema past and present. Wallace is an astute critic and scholar, but what astounded me were the early chapters that centered on her life. She should publish a memoir, as she has an acute ability to draw the reader into her personal life.

However, I do have one criticism. I do not like the way she handled bell hooks, and I'm not talking about Wallace's essays on the self-proclaimed diva of Black Feminism. In the early chapters, Wallace apologizes for writing the pieces on hooks, which undermines the excellent essays. The tone of Wallace's apology comes across as forced and insincere. bell hooks trashes everybody, and she has NEVER apologized or regretted a word she has put on paper. Just as Postcolonial critic Sara Suleri did a decade ago when she chastised hooks, Wallace should have stuck to her guns...Nonetheless, the essays on hooks are provocative, valid, and downright juicy.
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