Black No More a Satiric Science Fiction of Racism

21 Feb

George S. Schuyler promotes the view behind the concept of race in a satiric narrative style. He seems to be depicting the issue of race as something that people performed other than something being fundamentally created with. Black No More is an interesting work that mocks America’s racial caste system and pseudoscience on which racism is based. This work focuses on the reliance on both racist and ostensibly anti-racist organization on the skin color. What makes it really interesting is the use of scientific invention that a scientist is able to transform black people into whites.

Schuyler represents his ideas based on the reality in his time, early in the twentieth century. Racism is a controversial issue in the United States. Schuyler deals with this issue sarcastically is a chance for the black people to portray their needs within the nation wide. People were treated based on their skin color and Schuyler seems to be pointing out what might happen if all people in the U.S. turned to be white! Therefore, the scientific discovery can make that happen. We can see how the protagonist, Max Disher, is rejected by the white women as a result of rejecting his color. This caused him to be one of the first people who run to the scientific breakthrough “Black No More”. This scientific technology can help those black to achieve their goals to be treated equally with the white. This technology can turn black people white in a three days treatment that costs them fifty dollars. The treatment, as Schuyler describes, includes “a formidable apparatus of sparkling nickel. It resembled a cross between a dentist chair and electric chair” (13). This scientific electric chair is the tool that can turn the desire of many black to be accomplished.

I believe that Racism is usually treated as a system that is supported by material and economic conditions at work in a field of either social or political. Therefore, Schuyler satiric treatment of race is portrayed to be primarily based on a business or economic interest. For example, we can see how the scientist, Crookman, has increased entrepreneurial, with regard to his race, throughout the nation. We can see how those people are corrupted by the economics even after being white such as manipulation of the Southern labor. The novel portrays how those colored people once they are white, they has a strong capitalist spirit such as Crookman and Fisher. It is obviously a satiric treatise where he represents these characters as they are turned to have the white motives. It could be argued that Schuyler has a vision that describes the irrational color prejudice beyond the conversion. Therefore, he ends up criticizing and blaming the economic insufficiency.

Based on the provided discussion and examples, it could be argued that Black No More implies more than just satiric science fiction of racism. Schuyler is depicting the issue of race. This work could be a criticism of how racism can be treated as a system that supports the material economic conditions in his time. We can see how the transferred white characters have irrational color prejudice. Therefore, he ends blaming the economic insufficiency.


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