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Disability Media Studies$
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Elizabeth Ellcessor and Bill Kirkpatrick

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781479867820

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479867820.001.0001

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How to Stare at Your Television

How to Stare at Your Television

The Ethics of Consuming Race and Disability on Freakshow

(p.107) 4 How to Stare at Your Television
Disability Media Studies

Lori Kido Lopez

NYU Press

Lori Kido Lopez considers the ethics of watching Freakshow, a reality television show that aired on U.S. cable channel AMC from 2013 to 2014. Taking into consideration the racial and disability politics of historical freak shows, Lopez closely analyzes three African American performers and their relationships to the white male proprietor of the Venice Beach Freakshow. This chapter moves beyond representational critiques and offers “listening” as a way to ethically engage with this and other media that offer seemingly exploitative or depoliticized visions of intersectional marginalized identities.

Keywords:   television, reality television, freaks, race

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