Let's dissect Childish Gambino's "This is America" Music Video:
Start writing a post
Entertainment

Let's dissect Childish Gambino's "This is America" Music Video:

This is America is merely of the many reasons to love Donald Glover.

33
Let's dissect Childish Gambino's "This is America" Music Video:
media.giphy.com

This is America is a powerful music video, crafted by Childish Gambino, that brings to light the systemic violence propelled against blacks in the United States through a thrilling hip-hop and rap inspired visual lens. In his music video, Gambino illustrates how black people are unjustly oppressed and silenced as a result of institutionalized white supremacy across history.

The video is set in a bleak, spacious warehouse, and begins with a black man playing his guitar until he is suddenly shot in the head. Gambino decides to dress shirtless to depict his raw humanness and wears uniform pants similar to those worn by Confederate soldiers to demonstrate how blacks are still in this fight against racial prejudice. His peculiar dance moves and exaggerated facial expression mimic the minstrel character, Jim Crow, which is also a term used to describe segregation laws before the Civil Rights Movement. The Jim Crow minstrel show was a popular seventeenth century show which comically mocked black people for their dark skin color, notoriously using black face.

Next, as the black choir gaily sings together, Gambino swiftly slides in front of the choir until he begins to suddenly shoot. This represents the mass killing in Charleston church where white supremacist, Dylann Roof, blasted fire on the black attendees.

As Glover repeats, watch me move, blacks in the background are chased by cops, a powerful gesture towards police brutality in America.

Then, the camera moves towards a group of black boys, wearing white masks, using their cellphones as Glover sings, "This is a celly, that's a tool." This depicts how when black people use their phones to record videos of their violence and publicize their stories across social media platforms – black people are still actively silenced.

Later, as the camera follows the crowd, a white horses, ridden by a hooded figure, strides past the police car in the background. Many claim that the white horse pays tribute to the controversy surrounding confederate statues which are still standing and glorified today.

As the video comes to a close, twitter users speculate that the rusty, aged cars represent the stalled socioeconomic and political mobility of black Americans. Others argue that the opened-door cars symbolize how black Americans are racially-profiled and targeted when pulled over, and forced to vacate their vehicles leaving their doors left open.

The video ends with Gambino running down a dark, grim hallway as he is chased. This image can be traced to Get Out 's sunken place, a mental prison where the Armitage family traps African Americans as prisoners. Gambino's This is America video has transfigured into a monument of the Black Lives Matter movement, reflecting his artistic, woke vision through hip-hop-and-rap-inspired visuals as a mode to illustrate the historical and contemporary racial bias against black people across America.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

46678
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee
nappy.co

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

120183
college students waiting in a long line in the hallway
StableDiffusion

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments