Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture” as Want to Read:
Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  25 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Western culture has long been fascinated by black women, but a history of enslavement and colonial conquest has variously labeled black women's bodies as "exotic" and "grotesque." In this remarkable cultural history of black female beauty, Janell Hobson explores the enduring figure of the "Hottentot Venus."
In 1810, Saartjie Baartman was taken from South Africa to Europe,
...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published July 15th 2005 by Routledge
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Venus in the Dark, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Venus in the Dark

Community Reviews

(showing 1-53)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Zanna
Jan 09, 2014 Zanna rated it it was amazing
We only need to remember Sara Baartman to realise that a slogan such as 'Black is beautiful' is never superficial and always political.

The treatment of Sara Baartman, the original embodiment of the 'Hottentot Venus', a Khoisan woman who was brought from South Africa to England and Paris around 1810 and exhibited is the jumping off point for this academic work. Hobson first investigates and critiques the construction of black female beauty/sexuality by white supremacy. I was struck by the points
...more
Elizabeth
Sep 26, 2009 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
I love any book that includes an examination of non-white women in popular culture, because more of this scholarship only examines white women. Hobson should have included Black women in music, television, videos, and advertising, but she mainly looked at theatre, art, and indie films, which are items not in the mainstream and so less well known. All in all, a great book for my women & popular culture class.
Maddy Kundel
Mar 20, 2014 Maddy Kundel rated it liked it
Overall and in short, this was a good book in that it delves deep into the hypersexualization and creation of the black Venus. Though Hobson had *many* periods of rambling, lost thesises, and extreme overuse of sources--all of which made a couple of her ideas lost in a sea of confusion and someone else's words.
Joshua Krathwohl
Oct 12, 2015 Joshua Krathwohl rated it really liked it
Really great book with good analysis of visual art, Toni Morrison, and Ngozi Onwurah's video works and how black beauty aesthetics have been distorted, evolved, and shaped (in positive and negative ways). Somewhat dated, but still a really good text.
Jade Metzger
Aug 23, 2010 Jade Metzger rated it liked it
An awesome book. Great for any scholar in race, feminist, performance, sexuality, post colonization studies.
Jake Powell
Aug 28, 2016 Jake Powell rated it it was amazing
Often over my head, but I'm still glad I spent the time to read it. Hoping to read more supporting literature, and return to reread once I feel I could do it justice.
Erin M
Erin M rated it really liked it
Sep 22, 2010
Adam Smith
Adam Smith rated it really liked it
Oct 15, 2015
Amanda
Amanda rated it really liked it
May 04, 2014
Claire
Claire rated it it was amazing
Aug 03, 2011
David Caruso
David Caruso rated it really liked it
May 29, 2016
Matthew Somoroff
Matthew Somoroff rated it did not like it
Sep 08, 2009
Allye
Allye rated it really liked it
Oct 11, 2011
Zoe
Zoe rated it liked it
Nov 14, 2016
Briony
Briony rated it liked it
Oct 01, 2011
Kathleen
Kathleen rated it really liked it
Feb 13, 2011
Jenn
Jenn rated it liked it
May 05, 2012
Deborah Goffe
Deborah Goffe rated it liked it
Jul 02, 2015
Esther
Dec 24, 2013 Esther rated it really liked it
Made me sad and mad, but great read
Ana Caguiat
Ana Caguiat rated it liked it
Aug 20, 2012
Alicia
Alicia rated it it was amazing
Apr 29, 2014
Issa
Issa rated it really liked it
May 11, 2008
Leigh
Leigh rated it really liked it
Oct 13, 2015
Erin
Erin rated it really liked it
Apr 30, 2012
Mendi
Mendi marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2007
Kim
Kim added it
Feb 22, 2008
Tah-neka
Tah-neka marked it as to-read
Mar 12, 2008
penny shima glanz
penny shima glanz marked it as to-read
Sep 09, 2008
Izetta Autumn
Izetta Autumn marked it as to-read
Oct 29, 2008
dollmatic
dollmatic marked it as to-read
Dec 12, 2008
Z.
Z. marked it as to-read
Dec 13, 2008
J Aurelius
J Aurelius marked it as to-read
Dec 16, 2008
Anne
Anne marked it as to-read
Jan 18, 2010
Shantae
Shantae marked it as to-read
Feb 19, 2010
Daressalaam
Daressalaam marked it as to-read
Feb 24, 2010
Tameca
Tameca marked it as to-read
Feb 27, 2010
King Jones #24
King Jones #24 marked it as to-read
Apr 29, 2010
Akilah Zende
Akilah Zende marked it as to-read
Oct 20, 2010
Jocelyn
Jocelyn marked it as to-read
Oct 25, 2010
Yasmin
Yasmin marked it as to-read
Oct 26, 2010
Jbondandrews
Jbondandrews marked it as to-read
Oct 26, 2010
Lauren
Lauren added it
Jan 07, 2011
Lisa C
Lisa C marked it as to-read
Mar 04, 2011
geneva  warbucks
geneva warbucks marked it as to-read
Nov 17, 2011
Nicole
Nicole marked it as to-read
Oct 01, 2012
Nikhil P. Freeman
Nikhil P. Freeman marked it as to-read
Jan 16, 2013
Veronica N. Dunlap
Veronica N. Dunlap is currently reading it
Jan 28, 2013
Chantal
Chantal marked it as to-read
Mar 26, 2013
Naomi
Naomi marked it as to-read
May 01, 2013
J G
J G marked it as to-read
May 05, 2013
Catherine Thuruthiyil
Catherine Thuruthiyil marked it as to-read
Jun 03, 2013
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Share This Book