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The Colorblind ScreenTelevision in Post-Racial America$
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Sarah Nilsen and Sarah E. Turner

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781479809769

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479809769.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 02 July 2022

The Race Denial Card

The Race Denial Card

The NBA Lockout, LeBron James, and the Politics of New Racism

(p.108) 5 The Race Denial Card
The Colorblind Screen

David J. Leonard

Bruce Lee Hazelwood

NYU Press

This chapter explores the role and production of race, specifically black athletes, in professional sports television programming, as well as in the imagination of the largely white viewing audience. Some claim that the shift in racial rhetoric that has resulted in the denial of racism is becoming the new form of racism. For them the race denial card is the most powerful and widely circulated in the deck, as evidenced by its ubiquity and the constant demonization of those who “introduce” race into the discussion. Examining the ways in which race—racial talk, the white racial frame—is central to contemporary sporting discourses, the chapter explores the ways in which these sites exist as contested spaces of racial meaning through an analysis of the reactions to the 2011 NBA lockout and LeBron James' decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010.

Keywords:   race, black athletes, professional sports television programming, racism, race denial card, racial talk, white racial frame, 2011 NBA lockout, LeBron James

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