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As a stereotypical caricature "performed by white men disguised in facial paint, minstrelsy relegated black people to sharply defined dehumanizing roles." With the success of T. Rice and Daniel Emmet the label of "blacks as buffoons" was created.
One of the earliest versions of the "black as buffoon" can be seen in John Lewis Krimmel's "Quilting Frolic." The violinist in the 1813 painting, with his tattered and patched clothing, along with a bottle protruding from his coat pocket appears to be an early model for Rice's Jim Crow character.
Unaccustomed to the requirements of a tropical climate, Europeans mistook semi-nudity for lewdness.
The practice of polygamy among Africans was attributed to uncontrolled lust, and tribal dances were construed as orgies.
The character found great favor among the Whites of Great Britain and Australia as well, into the late 20th century.
Notably, as with Sambo, the term as an insult crosses ethnic lines; the derived Commonwealth English epithet Wog is applied more often to people from the Arabian Peninsula and Indian Subcontinent than to Africans, though "Golly dolls" still in production mostly retain the look of the stereotypical blackface minstrel.
There are many other stock characters that are popularly known as well, like Mammy and Jezebel.
These stock characters are still continuously used and referenced for a number of different reasons.
The book has often been considered to be a slur against Africans, and "Sambo" as a slur has certainly been used this way, though the US restaurant chain Sambo's, surviving until 1982, used iconography more in tune with a Jungle Book view of 19th-century India.
Gollywog is a similarly enduring caricature, most often represented as a blackface doll, and dates to American children's books of the late 19th century.
One social scientist has claimed that black women's dominance and matriarchal status within their families, rather than discriminatory social policies and economic inequalities, were responsible for the unemployment and the emasculation of black men, which ultimately resulted in poverty, single parenthood, and the production of criminally inclined, academically low-achieving black children.
The idea that black women were sexually promiscuous stemmed from Europeans' first encounter with African women.
It told the story of a boy named Sambo who outwitted a group of hungry tigers.