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Illustrated Prejudice. A Visual Guide to Discrimination in “Jim Crow” America. Introduction. Be Advised : These images are offensive and may make you angry or uncomfortable.

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illustrated prejudice

Illustrated Prejudice

A Visual Guide to Discrimination in “Jim Crow” America


Be Advised: These images are offensive and may make you angry or uncomfortable

These images were compiled for a solely educational purpose and not intended to offend anyone. The purpose is solely to illustrate the perceptions of this era and connect to literature.

The images are not a reflection of my personal beliefs or those of IUP.

The old saying goes that a picture is worth a thousand words.

However, words can’t express the hatred, injustice and discrimination that were brought about under Jim Crow

The following images show the inaccurate portrayal of African Americans in this era, and how they were discriminated against.


These images portray African Americans as lazy, uneducated, unattractive and dumb.

The bottom right hand image portrays the chef denying that the child is his son.

These helped to illustrate the idea that blacks were lesser and unfortunately many believed it, like the mayor’s wife in The Color Purple

film media
Film & Media

Major media such as Disney films, popular comics, and T.V. shows like Tom & Jerry (bottom left), and Amos and Andy portrayed blacks as inadequate This media presented this hateful idea to children and reinforced the perception.


Signs that segregated restrooms, movie theaters, restaurants, and waiting rooms were commonplace.

The Ku Klux Klan terrorized black individuals (much like John D in Beloved) during this time. However, they were portrayed as gallant in the white community.

Segregation also enforced divided transportation, like in The Color Purple.

why does it matter
Why does it matter?

Unfortunately, these hateful images still occur today. However, society can educate people and explain how these images have adverse effects and why racism is not appropriate.

image credits
Image Credits

Dr. David Pilgrim, Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion
Founder of the Jim Crow Museum
Ferris State University