The Chinese New Year gala show unleashes new racism controversy with blackface performance

The Chinese state broadcaster was again criticized for a show featuring dancers made up to look African during its annual gala show to celebrate the Lunar New Year.

During the four-hour CCTV show, which typically draws hundreds of millions of viewers, the performers appeared on stage wearing clothes that approximated African attire and darkened their skin with makeup. “The New Year’s Gala Directors team is just plain stupid and vicious,” said one of several users who turned to Weibo, the Twitter- as a social media platform, to criticize the skit.

“Is there any difference between Chinese who make black faces and whites who fold their eyes to make fun of Asians?” The gala sparked similar controversy in 2018 for a skit with actress Lou Naiming. She appeared on stage in colorful clothes, her face and arms brown, carrying a fruit basket on her head and accompanied by someone in a monkey costume. (https://reut.rs/3p7KpxW)

Organizations and supporters of Africans in China also criticized the show, which aired Thursday night. “While proponents of the practice claim that blackface is all about empathy and realism, it’s hard to dissociate. from a long history of minstrels and fixation on problematic caricatures, “said Black China Caucus, a group of activists Twitter.

“Next year, we hope the organizers decide to end this practice and hire some of the thousands of people of color living in many parts of China.” On Friday, a public holiday, the Chinese Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment. A CCTV representative could not be reached for comment.

The show, which this year focused on celebrating Chinese health workers and the country’s space program, has been a staple of television since it first aired in 1983.

(This story was not edited by our team of editors and is generated from a feed.)

News Highlights:

  • The Chinese state broadcaster was again criticized for a show featuring dancers made up to look African during its annual gala show to celebrate the Lunar New Year. During the four-hour CCTV show, which typically draws hundreds of millions of viewers, the performers appeared on stage wearing clothes that approximated African attire and darkened their skin with makeup.
  • The Chinese New Year gala show unleashes new racism controversy with blackface performance