NeMLA panel: Black Satire after Obama

deadline for submissions: 
October 15, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
55th NeMLA Annual Convention, March 7-10, 2024 in Boston, Massachusetts
contact email: 

This session highlights interdisciplinary scholarship on contemporary Black satire from roughly 2013 to the present, such as how the TV series Atlanta and related texts serve as microcosmic exemplars for Black satirists’ commentary on life in the United States after Obama.

Abstracts are encouraged to take an interdisciplinary approach to their engagement with literary and cultural works that speak to the state of Black satire and American society since 2011. Please submit a 200-300 word abstract and a brief bio (50-100 words) by October 15, 2023. All abstracts must be submitted via

The goal of this NeMLA panel is to enable more scholars to join the conversation in connection to the forthcoming book Greater Atlanta: Black Satire after Obama, edited by Derek C. Maus and James J. Donahue (University Press of Mississippi, 2024). 

Black satire after Obama notably intensifies the critique directed toward those who claim to be dismantling anti-Black racism without forsaking the privileges afforded them by its continued existence, as exemplified by Dave Chappelle’s performance as host of Saturday Night Live’s first episode after Trump’s victory. Black satire after Obama largely eschews expectations of reform, instead offering a frustrated self-affirmation that echoes the forthright declaration that Black Lives do indeed Matter. Black satire after Obama reveals a profound shift in the proportion of scorn directed toward self-proclaimed allies in the existential struggle facing African Americans in a rapidly “unblackening” United States (to quote Larry Wilmore). Danielle Fuentes Morgan notes that the “laughter inspired by satire opens up space to acknowledge kaleidoscopic Blackness[,]…an ethical move that leads to social justice in its revelation of the multiple ways of performing Blackness and being Black, where social justice is the freedom to be, freedom to articulate and perform one’s own autonomous identity” (3-4).

55th NeMLA Annual Convention, March 7-10, 2024 in Boston, Massachusetts USA.