Their Obamas, Their Black Campaigning Obamas, are Militant


what does this remind you of:

from New Yorker editor David Remnick: “Our cover ‘The Politics of Fear’ combines a number of fantastical images about the Obamas and shows them for the obvious distortions they are […] The burning flag, the nationalist-radical and Islamic outfits, the fist-bump, the portrait on the wall — all of them echo one attack or another […] Satire is part of what we do, and it is meant to bring things out into the open, to hold up a mirror to prejudice, the hateful, and the absurd. And that’s the spirit of this cover.”

The cartoonist, Barry Blitt said: “I think the idea that the Obamas are branded as unpatriotic (let alone as terrorists) in certain sectors is preposterous […] It seemed to me that depicting the concept would show it as the fear-mongering ridiculousness that it is.”

in other news, the New Yorker has announced they are going to begin publishing flarf poems .



8 thoughts on “Their Obamas, Their Black Campaigning Obamas, are Militant

  1. I don’t know…I thought the satire was pretty obvious. I mean, I guess they could have made it more clear by having this image appear inside the thought-bubble of a GOP operative…but doesn’t the big New Yorker logo at the top make it clear enough that it’s satire? It’s a liberal magazine. If this were the cover of the National Review, that would be different.

    Actually, I like the idea of The New Yorker publishing flarf poems. It might reinvigorate people’s interest in poetry. That’s what flarf did for me anyway.

  2. hey matt, thanks for commenting. i def agree that the satire is obvious. unfortunately, it ain’t much else. well, that’s not true–it’s quite offensive.


  3. No one outside a few urban centers knows the New Yorker even exists. It has no impact on the election in swing states. Relax.

  4. If you agree that the satire is obvious, then wherein, for you, does the offensiveness lie? Simply in the depiction of certain images, in any context whatsoever? I’m not trying to be confrontational–I just really want to know your thought process on this.

    I mean, I could understand, if not necessarily agree with, someone who objected to it on the grounds that the satire was not obvious–someone who thought either that the illustration was straightforwardly representational of the artist’s attitudes (and I know you don’t think this). or who thought that the critique failed because its satirical intent was not made clear enough. But again, if you agree that it’s obviously satire, what’s the objection?

  5. Clarence Page’s and Ryan Barrett’s takes on the cover and the public’s response might be worth some consideration.

    An interesting side note: The New Yorker cover has already generated about six times the Internet discussion that the “terrorist fist jab” comment on Fox News generated.

    That’s a rough guess, based on two Google searches: (“New Yorker” + Obama + cover, which brings 606,000+ returns) and (“Fox News” “terrorist fist jab”, which brings about 125,000+ returns).

    Page and Barrett aside, most of the response has been to condemn the cover and the artist.

    In other words, people are generally made more upset, or at least are many times more vocal about, artists and media who hold up a mirror to the culture’s biases, war-mongering and fear-mongering (as the Barry Blitt and The New Yorker has done), than people and media who actually embody them (as is the case with E.D. Hill and Fox News).


  6. cf
    I don’t really have a problem w the cover other than it’s about as typically banal/lame as any other NYer cover, but it does seem to reinforce stereotypes about rubes v sophisticates, in terms of imagined/intended audiences. (ie “the rubes’ll never see it anyway…”)

  7. Michelle looks so way cooler in this drawing than she does in real life with that silly hotcombed flip. Afro-glory! Bring ’em back!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s