The Atlantic

Why the Dancing Makes 'This Is America' So Uncomfortable to Watch

The new music video from Childish Gambino weaponizes the viewer’s instinctive bodily empathy.
Source: RCA

“This Is America” isn’t the first time that Donald Glover, as his musical alter ego Childish Gambino, has . But the art form has a conspicuous symbolic significance in the artist’s latest single, which Glover debuted on : The song’s emphasis on dance was apparent in his live performance on the show, , and in the remarkable music video itself, which has more than 36 million views on YouTube as of publication. In the video, a grinning, shirtless Glover dances through a giant warehouse, occasionally accompanied by black school children in uniform, as chaotic scenes of violence unfold behind him—and are

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