Where’s the rest of it? Stories about black life in the inner-city. : ThyBlackMan

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Where’s the rest of it? Stories about black life in the inner-city.

May 26, 2016 by  
Filed under Education, Ent., News, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.com) “Where’s the rest of it?” is a line of dialogue from my web-series I thought would work as a title for this blog because I am asking Hollywood the same question about the stories it produces about inner-city black youth.

My web-series, the Miseducation of a First Generation College Student, is a dramedy that navigates the struggles of an inner-city first generation college student through the fictional character Lavor, but is a semi-autobiographical retelling of my experience(s) in undergrad. I attended the historically black college Delaware State University in Dover where I met a variety of interesting characters who I will try to recreate in the series. Although more importantly I believe being the first in my immediate family to attend college introduced some unique and oftentimes laughable learning curves suitable for dramatic storytelling.FireShot Screen Capture #010 - 'Miseducation of a First Generation College Student Ep_ 1 - YouTube' - www_youtube_com_watch_v=MLS9YXxUP38

Whereas Hollywood will produce inner-city stories about black males the narrative is limited. And this is why I want to tell my story. From John Singleton’s ‘Boyz n the Hood’ (1991) to Rick Famuyiwa’s ‘Dope’ (2015) a single parent struggling to raise an incredibly gifted athlete or genius who gets caught in a drug war is only part of the inner-city reality. As there are many two-parent homes struggling to raise children who never interact with drugs or gangs but must still overcome the challenges of their impoverished communities. There are different options in the ‘hood’. There are different people. There are different stories, problems, fates, and solutions. The drug dealer lives next door to someone who is devoutly religious and, though economically deprived, they are refusing to live morally corrupt; and next door to this staunchly religious neighbor there is someone different. And so if there is variety in the ghetto it should be reflected in the stories we tell. Otherwise we continue to glorify one part of the ghetto and what message does that send?

Dope was an amazingly well-crafted film but there could have been another obstacle in the main character’s life besides a bag of drugs. He could have had a father in the house and still struggled to get out of his poverty stricken neighborhood. There are entire families in the ghetto. There are blended families in the ghetto. We have to look at this. We have to know why Hollywood continues to produce stories about our inner-city youth from broken homes that involve the selling of drugs. Film is a powerful medium that helps to shape the identity of today’s youth.

It is difficult to defy the stereotypes mainstream media adamantly continues to produce. My web-series is one story about an inner-city black male who comes from a struggling two-parent home. He is not an athlete. He represents the ‘other’ part of the inner-city that successfully avoids selling narcotics. We love John Singleton. We love Dope; but we need to tell the rest of our story. The drug dealer is NOT the main character in every ghetto and some of us lived in two-parent homes. All of these images are important because we want to see the truth, but when part of the truth escapes us we remain ignorant about our diversity and potential.

Tylie is a rising dramatist who will attend the MFA program for dramatic writing at NYU Tisch School of the Arts in the fall. Follow his web-series @tylieshider on YouTube now!

Staff Writer; Tylie Shider

Also connect with this brother over at; TylieShider.com.


61 Responses to “Where’s the rest of it? Stories about black life in the inner-city.”
  1. Skylin Williams says:

    Do you think the images on television of inner-city youth fairly represent your friends and community?

  2. Makayla W.W. says:

    What would you like to see on television?

    I personalty would like to see the multiple races shown on TV to go against what their stereotypes might say about them and show the watchers that anybody, no matter your race, could possible do anything for themselves.

  3. I’m going to start watching your web series today, bro. This is exactly what’s missing in the entertainment spectrum, more in-depth stories about the black narrative, especially narratives that feature black men. Media propaganda is real and it feels like even some of the black screenwriters/directors are stifled when it comes to telling our stories, because they know what type of stories the networks and major production companies are going to back.

  4. Damion Pryce says:

    what would you like to see in the media ?

    I like to see more black television shows & more black actors , even in the animated shows.
    I don’t want to see all these movies & shows down grading black & Hispanics by stereotyping them by having them in movies with guns & drugs

  5. Marlon Bonilla says:

    How are inner-city youth portrayed in the media?

    Now day in TV all you see is Afroamericans, Hispanics as bad people who commit murder and as rapist but you never see that one of them is graduating from universities and representing the country, you never see an Afroamerican being murdered or an Afroamerican helpig a homeless people on news never take good acts made by them. People judge a person by their physical without knowing what their acts are , you never know if that person is gonna be the one who save one of your loved. Now days Afroamericans are judged by the acts of others and maybe they do that because of their economies. Media judge the people they can because you never gonna see media reports about how much money is sometime stolen by important person for the country instead of steal it they should build some houses for homeless people that are suffering right now in the streets without having anything to eat to sleep to stay. Media judge people who they don’t have to because before judge someone you gotta judge who you are and see the type of person you are and what you influence is for the world.

  6. Karen says:

    I would like to see more positivity . The media shows colored people as bad people , they don’t show their success stories and how they got there doing the right thing.

  7. Perla aka p $tacks says:

    I’d like to see the inner city youth portrayed as smart, independent and determined. Many of us are seen as the minority when we’re just as good as the majority.

  8. Tarnissha Pennington says:

    I would like to see people people against bullying and trying to stop it

  9. hoodgirl says:

    Thanks for sharing Tylie. Love the Title. Never give anyone your GOD-Given Power! Stay the course and you will reach your full potential. I recommend the following Self Development books to read to help you with this Journey of Life:

    1. John C. Maxwell’s Be a People Person
    2. James Allen’s As a Man Thinketh
    3. Zig Ziglar’s See You at the Top
    4. Myles Munroe’s Living Your Purpose

    Best Wishes with ALL your Endeavors!

  10. Andrea says:

    The beauty and honesty of art has been compromised for the love of fortune throughout the course of history art has been put on a platform for others to speak the truth but it has been compromised since now we are telling other stories without the real details being involved. Thr same as been told when it comes to blacks. We need to begin writing, producing, and starring in our own truths and sharing them through art. Great written piece. Keep going.

  11. Fernando Aguilar says:

    How are inner-city youth portrayed in the media?

    Inner-city youth are portrayed unfairly. People make them seem as if they are all bad people. Some actually make it out the “hood” and they become something great. It’s unfair to just have a stereotypical view of them just beacuse movies or shows on t.v make them seem a certain way. All races struggle, Caucasian, Hispanic, African-American, Asian. The world is too diverse just to focus on one race. Specially when the race is being talked bad about and demonstrated bad things about that one race. We are all humans and we all have different struggles. Nobody’s perfect.

  12. Justine Jones says:

    The images of inner city youth are often very distorted. Most of my friends in the community arent anything like a “thug” or a criminal. They might wish they were, but they aren’t. All of my friends do well in school and are very talented people. We dont carry guns, we dont drink lean, we dont do anything except for try to have fun as teenagers. We cant simply have fun withouy someone thinking we are doing wrong. There are other people who do fit the description of what media portrays us all to be, but they aren’t the majority of us.

  13. Desteny Borrayes says:

    Mainstream media influences popular culture a great deal. We see a celebrity doing something incredibly dumb and dangerous, next thing we know, we see everyone doing the incredibly dumb and dangerous act and this creates a trend. A trend- a topic that is a subject of many post on a subject media website.

  14. Raiem Nasuan "Pyro" Adams says:

    I believe that that the name that you came up with for this play isn’t really half bad. The play name is pretty good. I believe that this could really go some where. Even though my favorite teacher (burned pineapple head) Mr. Shider look pretty good on stage.

  15. Karen Vasquez says:

    What I would like to see in the media is things that helps us in life. Not just pictures of people showing themselves but things that helps us for our future like college. If there are things in the media like that, it would give us ideas and choices of what our future would be like.

  16. Kalijah Mathis says:

    I would like to see the youth in the inner-cities get along and stop killing eachother and start to really embrace the phrase #ALLLIVESMATTERS

  17. Katherine Cardona says:

    Now A Days All I See On The Media Is Fights, People intimidating others, pornographic images and videos, as well as people beating their children.I would like to see more funny, nothing graphic on the media some worth to see, something more peaceful

  18. oasey says:

    I would like little girls do stop posting nudes on social media

  19. Yasir Clark says:

    Inner city youth are betrayed in the media by people putting up fights on social media.

  20. Jenifer Henriquez says:

    What i like to see in website is people talking about the good things that black people do & everybody have to be together and respect each other & don’t matter what skin color is & that every body are the same & don’t be racist with them

  21. Alondra Machado says:

    What would you like to see in the media?
    I would like to see more relatable situations happening in movies and tv shows that do not make the inner city look so bad and show the good things that happen and the good people that people think we don’t have.

  22. Sugey Castillo says:

    I would like to see in the media how can black people do everythig as a lightskin person can without racism or people blocking their goals. Also, I wanna see movies or a play in which no one mentions how bad black people can be or the bad things they do.

  23. Kimberly says:

    What I would like to see on the media are positive ideas and positive tumors about my inner city instead of seeing negative and hearing negative stuff about my inner city

  24. Harshland says:

    Inner city youth in the media are portrayed by their skin and make on youth want to be those standards mainstream media makesbkids want to act like someone they really not in the media I want to see better then people being portrayed in disrespectful ways

  25. Adilia Rodríguez says:

    I think that this article stated the truth about the lives of black youth. This article explains how our lives are portrayed in the media ,What I see in the media is that they portray or communities as being predominantly African American living in the ghetto with the crime rate high. I saw a lot of black youth who are now living in poverty. Right now some of them are living the street life and they don’t have something to eat. I would like to see more projects involving black youth because that would help them a lot .

  26. Jessenia Muñoz says:

    I Think the media always portrays people of color as gang members and drug dealers. It doesn’t represent in a good way. We need to show them that not all of us live in the “hood” and that we are actually more than that .

  27. Jeaneth says:

    I want to see more people of color in the media. We need to be given more opportunities and we need to be represented in a good way. They always portray us as lazy drug addicts or that we are gang members which then later puts that image out there about us. I would also like to say that we have many cultures here and they don’t show that so yeah we need to step up our game and prove them wrong.

  28. Brian says:

    I would like to see more love, creativity, and peace in the media. Positive news & motivational information that everyone can relate and effect on.

  29. Nestor says:

    An amazing article ! Now adays all you see in the internet is gossip , fights , sex and stuff that is not productive to our generation . Our generation is growing up to fast ! And some of that is bescause of the stuff we see in the internet . So instead of all the negative stuff lets try beint positive .

  30. Heidy says:

    I don’t think the images of inner-city youth fairly represent my community because it doesn’t show everything going around. It only shows the same story over and over again. Instead it should be different family sterio types living in the inner-city to show how it is from different points of views.

  31. Jose Peña says:

    I would like to see more peace in the media, less people trying to do bad things for fun and less crazy stuff.

  32. Angela demoscoso says:

    This article explains a lot about youth and it’s good because people need to understand us youth also go through stuff everyday

  33. Sulma says:

    1) Now a days they portrayed city youth as if every black child has only one parent and automatically lives in the ghetto.
    2) yes, because it now a days everybody thinks of cool or actually believe that all that’s is showed there is true.
    3) This does not represent my family and friends the way it’s potrayed. We live a perfectly normal life
    4) I would like to see more children in succeed and become professionals

  34. Jaylinne says:

    Wow , this is soo interesting ! Great article
    The media should have more positive and productive news. Instead of having porn , fights , or uncessesary stuff we should have news about what’s going on around the world .

  35. Clementine says:

    I think the article is really good, but needs a little bit more details about the blacks, but overall the articals really good and i enjoyed watching and reading and looking forward to more in furture

  36. Kenneth says:

    It’s crazy and interesting the article, it’s good to read about

  37. Zakaes Patterson says:

    I’d like for the media to give more recognition to the people that teach, train, and help influence our future citizens.

  38. Imani Joyner says:

    What would you like to see in the media?

    I would like to see the media showing more successful African Americans and their achievements other than degrading them. An also bringing light to the problems kids in the inner cities are dealing with and solutions to help them and more equality and peace being shown.

  39. Yessica says:

    I would like to see more equality because people should be able to know that even if they are different color skin they should still be treated the same.

  40. Khaila says:

    Inner city youth are portrayed as people who always are looking for a helping hand or someone to pull them from their struggling homes. The mainstream media influences popular culture by portraying the idea that every minority in a struggling home can only achieve greatness through illegal money or sports when in reality it’s not. The images the media reveals doesn’t represent my friends to any extent because most of us live in a two parent home and don’t play sports and we are doing just fine. In the media I would like to see the black kids who don’t fit in the generalization of facing a struggle everyday or face the problem of becoming a drug dealer or gang problems.

  41. Michael Ruiz says:

    I believe that this article has stated the truth about the lives of black youth. This article somewhat explains how our lives are portrayed in the media. What I see in the media is that they portray or communities as being predominantly African American living in the ghetto with the crime rate high and employment rate low. But it does actually fairly some of my friends in the community because I had a lot of friends who are now living in poverty. Right now some of them are living the street life or living on welfare. But what I’d like to see is when they have a poor community like ours in the film with Nothing but people who refuse to work and take responsibility, but you see one person who has a goal to turn everybody’s lives around.

  42. Vaughn says:

    : I feel that the mainstream industry negatively affects the younger generation because it only show the negative part of black lives and it don’t show the positive side of how black people can become bigger and better than just a rapper or a ball player like a doctor or a lawyer. I wanna see more of that on a movie screen and this will cause the younger generation to strive for greater and be inspired to do more

  43. Zaniyah Boyd says:

    tbh I like the article but I feel as though you need to talk more about relatable topics about blacks. I would like to see more positive stuff in the media.Its a lot of negative stuff on the media The mainstream media influence popular culture by making black believe they meet they standards.

  44. jarleny says:

    what would you like to see in the media?
    i would like to see more television shows and movies that express equality of all races and cultures because people deserve to be acknowledged and appreciated for their culture.

  45. Gabreana R. says:

    Inner-city youth are portrayed as rebellious teens. Mainstream media influence popculture by showing a lot of doing illegal substances, guns and violence. I don’t think they fairly portray my friends and community because not everyone does that and follows everything they see.

  46. Norae Thomas says:

    Inner city youth are often portrayed in a way that makes it seem as though we’re all carbon cokes of one another. The girls are always loud and ghetto and the boys wear their pants low and everyone listens to the same music. The only aspects of inner city life that are ever really explored in the media are the negative ones. You never hear about or see movies following the kids who work hard and don’t get in trouble. It’s like those inner city youth aren’t exciting enough to make fils about.

  47. Maria Martinez says:

    Mainstream media influences popular culture by making people believe that they have to meet the standards set by the media, when half of the time the people in the media don’t even meet those standards themselves. It makes people dress and act like what they see.

  48. Amani says:

    I like the article I just think it should be more relatable subjects and topic about colored people.

  49. Onelsy says:

    What would you like to see in the media?
    I would like to see equality in the media. There should be people trying to spread equality through the media.

  50. Arturo says:

    I’d like to see more relatable subjects and topics involving colored people because there’s not enough recognition especially in the media. Any time colored people do get recognized it’s not for positive reasons.

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