Questioning Danish Cartoon Images

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearch


The article discusses the language and satirical cartoons that describe African Danes in the Danish media. Starting with a brief historical overview of the social fonction of satirical cartoons in Denmark since the Reformation, it is discussed whether satire and satirical cartoons actually have served to challenge authourities and the opinions of the majority or whether they mostly have expressed a sympathetic teasing ending up confirming the structures they appear to be depicting.

The analysis deals with social and historical reasons why the word "negro" (neger ) is still commonly used among Danes today when it is considered demeaning and racist in most other countries.

The conclusion does emphatically not plead in favour of law enforced limitations of the freedom of expression, but does question the prevalent "freedom of ignorance" concerning black identities which means that the individual black child has to take up the fight by herself when meeting racist images og jokes in school material and elsewhere.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationI am Black/White/Yellow : An Introduction to the Black Body in Europe
EditorsJoan Anim-Addo, Suzanne Scafe
Number of pages25
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherMango Publishing
Publication date2007
ISBN (Print)1 902294 31 9, 978 1 902294 31 5
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Racism in Denmark
  • african Danes
  • history of Danish satirical cartoons
  • Freedom of speech

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