Contemporary Coon Songs and Neo-Minstrels: Auto-Tune the News, Antoine Dodson, and the “Bed Intruder Song”

Posted: November 27, 2011 in Alexandrina Agloro, Minstrelsy, The Colour Line

Author: Alexandrina Agloro

Source: Georgetown University’s peer-reviewed Journal of Communication, Culture & Technology (CCT) – Journal Volume XI Issue II Spring 2011



“Coon songs and minstrel shows were at the peak of their popularity in the late-nineteenth century. Blackface minstrelsy and coon songs have since fallen out of factor in the United States, and are now looked up on with disdain and embarrassment. In this essay, I argue that the racial structures of the traditional coon song are updated and reiterated through the “Bed Intruder Song,” mirroring the historical constructions of blackface minstrelsy and coon songs in the early twentieth century. This essay outlines a historical overview of coon songs and how these structures relate to Antoine Dodson, the Gregory Brothers and the American audience’s reception of the “Bed Intruder Song.” By analyzing the “Bed Intruder Song” and online media’s reception of the video, this essay aims to illustrate how, in our “post-racial” moment, we’re not so colorblind.”



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