[lg policy] David Starkey: 'The whites have become black'

Dave Sayers dave.sayers at CANTAB.NET
Sun Aug 14 09:02:19 UTC 2011

Celebrity historian David Starkey -- known for his 'strong' views -- 
probes a new low on BBC Newsnight, with a tangled rhetorical soup mixing 
up black influence on English dialects, inner city multiethnicity, and 
criminality behind the London riots:


I hope that someone takes a screenshot of him eight minutes in, holding 
his hands in front of him like that, and photoshops him into one of the 
troublesome chavs he detests, making a gang sign. Starkey really needs 
to be mocked, not criticised. To that end, I'll give into the academic 
reflex to reach for a quotation:

“By devoting serious attention and thought to his victim, the critic 
shows him respect. … [With] satire, in contrast, … the joker abuses his 
victim, then presents him as laughable or absurd – beneath the bother of 
serious contempt” (Wilson, 1979:194).

Wilson, Christopher P. (1979). Jokes – Form, Content and Function. 
Academic Press: London.


Dr. Dave Sayers
Honorary Research Fellow
College of Arts & Humanities
and Language Research Centre
Swansea University
dave.sayers at cantab.net

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