The Washington Compost Strikes Again

I thought this headline represented a nadir for the Washington Post in the last week, though it can be excused at least for being reporting about the collective madness of the Democratic Party:

But the Post has yet greater reserves. Did you know that Star Wars is — wait for it — racist? Of course it is:

And it’s not just the characters, but the music itself!

[I]f we take a moment to think about it, George Lucas’s galaxy is, and has always been, far, far away from being an original or an inclusive creation. Star Wars is shot with “Orientalizing” stereotypes — patronizing tropes that represent an imagined East, or the Orient, as inferior to the rational, heroic West. . .

Think, for example, of the uniformed conformity of the evil Empire vs. the scrappy (American) individualism of the rebel heroes, the vague Eastern mysticism of the Force and its Shaolin-cum-Samurai practitioners, and the uncomfortable racial stereotypes embodied in the hookah-smoking Jabba and the miserly Watto.

Even those who have noted these prejudices could be excused for not noticing the presence of such tropes in another key element of every Star Wars film: John Williams’s iconic musical score. Williams’s music associates the “good guys” with the grand orchestral style of the European Romantics (think of the beautifully hummable melodies for Luke, Leia and Rey), while the themes for the “bad guys” are expressed in the vocabulary of Chinese, Indian and Middle Eastern music.

Read the whole thing if you are a glutton. It’s by Jeffery C. J. Chen, a PhD student in history at Stanford University. And people wonder why college students are fleeing history in droves these days.

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