Phillip Lamarr Cunningham, Ph.D.

Phillip Lamarr Cunningham, Ph.D. has written 11 posts for Resisting Spectator

Of Baseball and Film: The Importance of Supporting Black Independence

In a discussion on a friend and fellow scholar’s Facebook profile about a promotional interview with Red Tails stars Terrence Howard and David Oyelowo, my friend lamented Howard and Oyelowo’s somewhat haphazard attempt at creating an analogy between acceptance of black American soldiers by Europeans (particularly women) during World War II and acceptance of black … Continue reading

“The NBA Might Have To Move To Europe”: Considering Whiteness in the NBA

In a recent ESPN column, J.A. Adande highlighted the number of white American players on the current Los Angeles Lakers roster. Adande’s article was largely a reaction to the frequent appearance of the hashtag #TheLakersAreSoWhite during one of the team’s recent televised games. As Adande reminds readers, the current roster is the first since the … Continue reading

Red Tails and The “At Risk” Black Film Community

In a recent USA Today interview preceding the release of his self-financed film Red Tails, George Lucas stated the following regarding the film’s possible impact on black filmmakers: I realize that by accident I’ve now put the black film community at risk (with Red Tails, whose $58 million budget far exceeds typical all-black productions). I’m … Continue reading

Toward An Appropriate Analogy

When New York Times sports columnist William C. Rhoden’s provocative Forty Million Dollar Slaves arrived on bookshelves in 2006, it was met with the requisite controversy one might expect with using a slave analogy to explain the position of many today’s highly paid black athletes. Even those who found Rhoden’s argument compelling still found the … Continue reading

Blackness in the DC Comics’ New 52

In September, DC Comics launched the New 52, a bold initiative to draw in new readers by revising some of the foreboding continuity, renumbering series such as Action Comics and Detective Comics, and offering titles featuring new or revamped characters. St. Petersburg Times media critic Eric Deggans notes the presence of “characters of color and … Continue reading

The More, The Merrier (?): Bounce TV and an “Under-Served” Community

Yesterday morning, while flipping through the channels, I came across a commercial advertising Bounce TV, a new African American-owned digital television network set to debut on Monday, September 26. Bounce TV is spearheaded by some rather well-known figures, including Martin Luther King III and former American ambassador and Atlanta mayor Andrew Young. The network will … Continue reading

Still The Greatest Of All Time? Part III: Making A Case Against Michael Jordan

A quick caveat: The following does not necessarily represent my opinion. It is an attempt at an objective reconsideration of Michael Jordan’s status as the Greatest Of All Time (G.O.A.T.) per my previous post. 1. In his original statement regarding LeBron Jordan as the game’s best player, Scottie Pippen conceded that Michael Jordan was the league’s greatest … Continue reading

Still The Greatest Of All Time? Part II: Making A Case Against Rakim

A quick caveat: The following does not necessarily represent my opinion. It is an attempt at an objective reconsideration of Rakim’s status as the Greatest Of All Time (G.O.A.T.) per my previous post. 1. Undoubtedly, Rakim’s greatest influence on hip-hop has been the introduction of internal rhyme. Prior to the release of Paid in Full (1987), … Continue reading

Still The Greatest Of All Time?

Last week, former Chicago Bulls small forward Scottie Pippen suggested that Miami Heat All-Star LeBron James was a better player than the great Michael Jordan. Pippen stated, “Michael Jordan is probably the greatest scorer to play the game, but I may go as far as to say LeBron James may be the greatest player to … Continue reading

Persona Non Grata

A great deal has already been said and written about the recent controversy involving emcee/poet/actor Common being invited to perform at a poetry slam held at the White House. Perhaps the most noteworthy response to the controversy was offered by The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart (and continued here), in what was quite simply an effective takedown … Continue reading