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Race In Goofy Goat

by Nicholas Sammond

This is another example of the ubiquitous use of farm animals--pigs, goats, mice, cats--to signal the presence of blackface minstrels in cartoons. By the late 1930s, the direct association with minstrelsy would be lost, but at this moment, the cartoon can be equally read as a minstrel show.

Goofy Goat

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This is a Ted Esbaugh cartoon from 1931. It shows how ordinary animals were used to stand in for blackface minstrels, who themselves stood in for fantasies of African American life.

from Goofy Goat (1931)
Creator: Ted Esbaugh
Posted by Nicholas Sammond