This article explores John Edgar Wideman's reflections on the ways in which US television and news media reflect the political paranoias and traumatic histories of race in America - reflections that emphasize the spectral and symbolic life of race in public and private monitorings of selfhood and difference. Read in the context of contemporary and retrospective responses to 9/11, Wideman's discussion is used to examine the place of racial profiling in the television genre of 'infotainment', with its heavy reliance on data taken from closed circuit public television systems (CCTV). Looking at the monitoring gaze of CCTV images, the article concludes with a discussion of its mediating role in UK public responses to the murders of two Nigerian boys in London, Damilola Taylor and 'Adam'.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts