Watermelon stereotype

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In the early 20th century, a number of postcards were made to illustrate the watermelon stereotype; this is one of them.

The Watermelon stereotype is the steretypical view that black people can be made happy easily; they only need a watermelon and a little rest for their happiness.[1] The stereotype was perpetuated in minstrel shows often depicting African Americans as ignorant and workshy, given to song and dance and inordinately fond of watermelon.[2] This stereotype is common in the United States, and probably goes back to the times of slavery: The people who were in favour of slavery wanted to show that black people were simple-minded and only needed few things for their happiness.

References[change | change source]

  1. Wade, Lisa. "Watermelon: Symbolizing the Supposed Simplicity of Slaves". Retrieved March 30, 2013.
  2. Fences: Shmoop Literature Guide. 2010. p. 26. ISBN 9781610624190.