Plastic Representation

Richard Branson Reveals the Real Purpose for Barack Obama’s Oval Office Red Button


As I was reading “In the time of Plastic Representation” by Kristen J. Warner, I was struck by the applicability of the mantra, “representation matters.” I feel that we have heard this over and over and often it stands in as a placeholder for any sort of real discourse regarding the problem. I chose to overlay the quote, “overdetermining of black images as the marker of societal progress or regression makes any image acceptable on its face, obliterating context and sidelining any consideration of depth” over an image of President Obama. After Obama was elected on his slogan of “Hope” there was this implicit belief that we had done it. That his election proved to the world that our problem with racism was over. Because a black person was now holding the highest position of power in the world, we could call the struggle over. We checked a box and went home in substitute for talking about the problems of racism and even Obama’s personal racialized experience. And as we know, eight years after his election, the country elected Trump who founded a platform based on racism. I though that the juxtaposition between the image and the quote and what we know of historical context to be enlightening.