Toward a Counter-visual Education: Cinema, Race, and the Reorientation of White Visuality

  • David HermanJr.
  • Amelia M. Kraehe


This chapter explores how racial hegemony is instrumentalized and resisted through popular and mass-mediated visual culture. Using Critical Race Theory in combination with phenomenologies of difference and film theory, the authors juxtapose the Hollywood film 12 Years a Slave and cell phone videos that helped galvanize the Black Lives Matter movement to show how the politico-aesthetic strategies and frames employed in the making of these two visual sites/sights effectively and affectively challenge dominant white visuality. The discussion considers the way images of race “teach” viewers how to look and how such practices of looking contribute to the visual production of racial knowledge, identities, and power relations. Implications are drawn for a counter-visual arts education that confronts dominant white visuality.


Visuality Cinema Critical race theory Phenomenologies of difference Black Lives Matter Whiteness Visual culture Art education 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • David HermanJr.
    • 1
  • Amelia M. Kraehe
    • 1
  1. 1.School of ArtUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA

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