Season 1 Episode 3: The White Saviour
In this episode, we look at the popular cinematic trope of the “White Saviour.” The story of various white people saving people of colour from their own plight has a long history in Hollywood cinema. Unfortunately, this trope continues to go strong making it easy to draw from numerous contemporary examples.
Hasina Jamal joins us as we discuss the white saviour and its various incarnations, including the white teacher saviour, the civil rights white saviour, and the indigenous people’s white saviour. Specifically, she helps us focus on one sub narrative that has not received much attention: the white saviour and epidemics.
Surprisingly, there is very little material out there on this interesting literary and cinematic trope. Here are a few links to articles we mention or recommend in our episode:
- “White Saviour Industrial Complex” by Teju Cole in the Atlantic
- “Nigeria, Ebola and the Myth of the White Saviour” by Robtel Pailey in Al Jezeera Online
- “Oh Come All Ye White Saviours” by Phenderson Djeli Clark
- “The 10 Lames White Saviour Movies” by Matt Barone
- “Leonardo DiCaprio Donates $3.4M to Indigenous Groups in the Ecuadorian Amazon” by Yara Simón