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The Galloway Caylor Collection - Southern Methodist University (1953-4)

Diane Galloway

Silent | 1953

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  •  Dallas Hall 
  •  Perkins Chapel 
  •  Zeta picnic 
  •  SMU Homecoming 
  •  Antebellum-themed parade, including persons in what appears to be blackface 
  •  The SMU Mustangs host the Texas A&M Aggies at the Cotton Bowl, winning 6-3 
  •  Convocation ceremony 
  •  Greek life 
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This home movie from the early 1950s captures student life at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. After touring notable buildings, including Dallas Hall and Perkins Chapel, the film documents campus events, from a sorority picnic to homecoming to convocation. Also included is footage of the 1954 football game between the SMU Mustangs and the Texas A&M Aggies, played in the Cotton Bowl. The Mustangs won 6-3. Please note, the film depicts individuals in blackface, indicative of the time in which it was produced. The Texas Archive of the Moving Image does not condone the use of blackface, but presents this film as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as to claim this practice never existed. Blackface refers to a form of theatrical makeup used by white performers to not only represent a black person but also embody racist stereotypes as a style of entertainment. Gaining popularity during the 19th century as a major component of minstrel shows and in the early 20th century as a form of its own, the practice contributed to the dissemination of racist characters, images, and attitudes worldwide. While its prominence began to wane as a theatrical device by the mid-20th century due to changing opinions about race and racism, this film illustrates blackface’s continued presence in popular culture.