1. Describe the audience that creator Justin Simien is
trying to reach.
I believe that Justin’s target audience is anyone that was
willing to see what really goes on in our society. Unfortunately we have an out
of sight, out of mind mentality for a lot of things, this of course includes
racism. However this shows addresses a lot of our current racial issues, what
is black culture and black identity overall.
2. Based on this first episode, what do you think the
purpose of the Series is?
I strongly believe the purpose of the show is to portray the
complex and multifaceted problem that is race relations and black identity in
our society especially relevant at a time where race is dominating our national
conversation and the current political and social climate as charged as it is.
3. Describe the setting of episode one.
Episode one of the Dear White People takes us to Winchester
University that, while it’s regarded as extremely prestigious, is ridden with
identity politics and increasing racial tension after a video of a black face
party surfaced online. The first character we are introduced to is to Samantha
White, who hosts a radio show called “Dear White People” where she discusses
current topics and things that white people do that are racially insensitive.
It is later revealed that while she advocated black culture and not to fall in
love with their oppressors, she was dating a Caucasian student. After her
fellow students find out that their leader, the one whose voice speaks the
loudest and is seen as the face of their community, is dating a white guy,
uproar followed. This however is solved by the end of the episode after she
learned to embrace who she was, what she stands for, and who she truly loves.
4. Compare and contrast the setting and ensemble of
characters of episode one of Dear White People and chapter one of Light in
In DWP we are taken to a prestigious modern university where
a mixed black student struggles with her identity while facing the racially charged
atmosphere in her university all the meanwhile advocating equal rights. On the
other hand in LIA we are transported back to the 1920’s and we are introduced
to Lena, a naive girl that left her home in Alabama in the search of a man by
the name of Lucas Burch who left her after he found she was pregnant.
One thing I found interesting
is how both works describes how selfish we can be. In DWP’s case we see that
while Samantha advocates black culture and identity she still follows her heart
and dates a white student even though she most likely know it would bring her
trouble and in LIA we meet Lena who at the end of chapter one is more
interested in finally reaching Jefferson and finding Burch than the house on
fire a few mile ahead, where people could have been injured.