Searching for Dave Chappelle

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“To turn his back on Hollywood, to walk away from the spotlight because it was turning him into a man he didn’t want to be—a man without dignity—was a move that was, in a way, Chappelle’s birthright, his own unwieldy kind of Negritude.”

Featured in this month’s Believer is Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah’s essay on the 10-year anniversary of Dave Chappelle’s departure from his self-titled show. It’s not just an exceptional meditation on one of the most popular sketch comedy television series ever but a raw reflection on the impact of race in the comedy world, and Chappelle’s role in being “the world’s most famous interlocutor in a conversation about race—the one conversation no one likes having.”


Julie Morse lives in San Francisco and is a poetry teacher. She can be found @JulieMorse16. More from this author →