Over the past three decades, the National Basketball Association (NBA) has been an instructive window into the practices and politics of popular racial representation. This is particularly true with regard to the framing of African Americans in general, and African American males in particular, within the commercial media. From being institutionally unsure as to how to address its perceived racial "problem," the NBA has become a site for the creative mobilization of stereotypical understandings of Black spaces, experiences, and aesthetics as a means of stimulating the post-Fordist consumer marketplace. The emergence of this ghettocentric basketball logic provides the focus of this discussion, which seeks to critically engage the (re)invention and management of Blackness within the commercial spectacle of the NBA.
- racial representation
- urban culture