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Pharos

Doing Justice to the Classics

Scholars Respond to Racist Backlash against Black Achilles, Part 3: What Makes a Homeric Hero a Hero?

This is Pharos’ third post responding to racist criticism of the BBC/Netflix miniseries Troy: Fall of a City, in which a black actor plays Achilles. Our first post discussed Greek attitudes toward Africans in order to show that ancient audiences would have had no problem with a black Achilles, and our second post addressed the […]

Scholars Respond to Racist Backlash against Black Achilles, Part 2: What did Achilles look like?

This is Pharos’ second post responding to the racist criticism of David Gyasi being cast to play Achilles in the BBC/Netflix miniseries Troy: Fall of a City. Pharos documented that criticism here and here, and the first part of our response addressed ancient Greek attitudes toward Africans. Racist commentators accuse the miniseries of erasing the […]

Scholars Respond to Racist Backlash against Black Achilles, Part 1: Ancient Greek Attitudes toward Africans

In February of 2018, the BBC broadcast an eight-part miniseries, Troy: Fall of a City, that told the story of the Trojan War. Netflix later released the miniseries in the United States. The casting of David Gyasi, a British-born actor of Ghanaian descent, to play Achilles provoked a storm of racist criticism on social media […]

Racist reaction to David Gyasi playing Achilles in BBC/Netflix “Troy” Miniseries

David Gyasi, a London-born actor of Ghanaian descent, plays the role of Achilles in the BBC’s and Netflix’ miniseries Troy: Fall of a City. Implicitly racist reactions to this casting have appeared on social media and in the comments sections of press about the show. The topic has now been taken up on Stuff Black People […]

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