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Old May 26 2013, 09:32 AM   #1
Candlelight
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Doctor Who accused of racism

http://www.stuff.co.nz/8718898/Docto...eringly-racist

Doctor Who has been accused of many things during its 50 years on TV - most to do with cheesy special effects - but "thunderingly racist" is probably not one of them.
A group of academics claim the popular British sci-fi show is steeped in attitudes "that continue to subjugate people of colour" and shows contempt for "primitive" people.
In a new book, Doctor Who and Race, they argue that the Timelord is dismissive towards his black companions and question why he is more interested in battling Daleks and Cybermen than fighting slavery.
One even cites the Doctor's love of cricket as proof of the show's prejudices.
Professor Amit Gupta says that Peter Davison's incarnation of the character in the Eighties "portrayed the amateur English cricketer of the late 19th Century when the game was characterised by both racial and class distinctions.
"Cricket also had a role in maintaining the status of British imperialism through the exercise of soft power as it was successfully inculcated by the colonial elites. Davison's cricketing Doctor once again saw the BBC using Who to promote a racial and class nostalgia that had already outlived its validity."
Although the faces on Doctor Who have been predominantly white - to date, there has been no black Doctor and shows in the Seventies had white actors playing Asian parts - more recent producers have tried to champion a more diverse cast.
However, another contributor to the book criticises these attempts, citing the relationship David Tennant's Doctor has with black companion Martha Jones (played by Freema Agyeman).
She says an episode in 2007 had the Doctor speaking dismissively of Martha's fears that she would be sold into slavery as the two characters visited Elizabethan England.
The Doctor tells her to "walk about like you own the place. It works for me."
The author claims the comment "betrays the ignorance of writers about historical racial violence and contemporary white privilege".
Lenny Henry for Doctor #12.
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