This article delves into Michaela Coel’s Chewing Gum, examining how the cultural text builds upon Black feminist media discourse, and intimately grapples with the nuances of Black women’s sexuality while explicitly challenging misogynoir. This work illustrates how Coel is helping develop a Black British cultural aesthetic that centers Black women’s liberation, specifically from an African immigrant perspective, by using satire, all the beauty, pain, and struggles that come with #blackgirlmagic, eccentric adornments, and ‘awkward’ ostentatious characters that at times play into racist images and tropes of Black womanhood to expose the absurdity of life in an anti-Black, sexist, and xenophobic society. In sum, this article understands Coel’s work in Chewing Gum to be Black girl surrealism – the intersection of Afro-surrealism, British dark comedy, and Black feminism.

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Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
doi.org/10.18146/view.266
VIEW Journal

Hope, Jeanelle Kevina. (2021). An Ode to Black British Girls: Black British Feminism, Black Girl Surrealism, and Michaela Coel’s Chewing Gum. VIEW Journal, 10(20), 34–47. doi:10.18146/view.266