Between the 1890s and 1910s, manufacturers transformed African American imagery into advertising symbols to sell popular consumer products. Manufacturers captured bourgeoning racial stereotypes and developed them into usable, workable models for the twentieth-century. Exploring the construction of this imagery offers a clearer understanding of how race influenced consumer purchasing and vice versa. Most striking was white society’s encouragement of manufacturers to render the symbolic more realistic. Through the manufactured incarnation of racialized advertizing, figures like Aunt Jemima and the Gold Dust Twins developed into master symbols of race and modernity.
|Keywords:||Aunt Jemima, Gold Dust Twins, Cream of Wheat, Korn Kinks, Mammy, Pickaninny, Whiteness, Racism, Advertising, Consumerism, Modernity|
Graduate Student, History Department, University of Texas, San Antonio, USA