I remember my mother trying to explain the Black and White Minstrel Show to me as a child. I couldn't understand why white men were made to look like black men when they could have got real black men like Louis Armstrong to sing the songs.
I also had a golliwog as a child. Still have it because it was given to me by Auntie Elsie who was more than 90 years old and not my real aunt but an old lady that my Dad used to help out with her garden. She was a lovely old dear with a beautiful garden and an interesting house. She was a wonderful storyteller and I loved visiting her. I was so pleased when she gave me the knitted golliwog. I thought that Elsie had knitted it especially for me but my sister later said that wasn't so. It is the only keepsake I have of Elsie.
Golliwogs are still sold in Australian stores. i don't think Australians are really aware of the Minstrel stereotype. Even though I saw the Black and White Minstrels I didn't make the connection to my golliwog who I thought was some sort of gnome.