Herald Sun reprints Serena cartoon

Australian artist’s cartoon of Serena Williams cartoon swiftly condemned as racist

Herald Sun cartoonist Mark Knight made global headlines this week after his cartoon depicting Serena Williams responding to the umpire was slammed as racist, reinforcing denigrating tropes against African-Americans popularised in the segregationist Jim Crow era.

Herald Sun editor Damon Johnston also jumped to Knight's defence, saying in a tweet that the cartoon "rightly mocks poor behaviour by a tennis legend".

This Mark Knight's cartoon published by the Herald Sun depicts Serena Williams as an irate, hulking, big-mouthed black woman jumping up and down on a broken racket.

The cartoon was intended as a lampoon of the tennis star's angry exchanges with chair umpire Carlos Ramos at the U.S. Women's Singles final in NY on Saturday.

The front page also features cartoons of other of well-known figures, including Donald Trump, claiming they would all also be banned, with the headline "Welcome to the PC world".

"If the self-appointed censors of Mark Knight get their way on his Serena Williams cartoon, our new politically correct life will be very boring indeed", the subhead reads.

Knight, who has a reputation for controversial cartoons, was pilloried from far and wide, including by a member of the US Congress and a large portion of the 22 000 people who commented on his Twitter post showing the drawing.

A cartoon depicting Serena Williams has sparked outrage on Twitter after it was compared with racist illustrations of the Jim Crow character and images of black people in the Sambo books from the early 20th century, Aljazeera reports.

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But Knight, a veteran artist, defended his illustration - denying it was sexist or racist, saying the worldwide storm that ensued was a "world gone crazy".

Knight was criticised in some quarters for being "racist and sexist".

Mark Knight's interpretation of Serena Williams.

"Because the young player outplayed her in the first set, I think pressure got her more than anything".

"Well done on reducing one of the greatest sportswomen alive to racist and sexist tropes and turning a second great sportswoman into a faceless prop", said J.K. Rowling. I drew her as she is, as an African-American woman.

He told the Herald Sun: 'The cartoon was just about Serena on the day having a tantrum. And what that means is you can't criticise minority groups for poor behaviour. Williams called Santos a "thief" for the coaching ruling and in response Santos issued a third code violation, handing the game to Osaka. She's interesting to draw.

"Serena is an unbelievable athlete, an African American woman and a very powerfully built woman". They say they are often forced to watch their tone and words in the workplace in ways that men and other women are not.

Speaking to ABC, Knight refused to apologise, saying, "I'm upset that people are offended, but I'm not going to take the cartoon down".

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