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Dave Chappelle speech addressing backlash to trans jokes is released on Netflix

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Netflix has released a speech by Dave Chappelle where he addresses the backlash to his previous special The Closer.A 40-minute special titled What’s In A Name was released on the streaming platform on Thursday (July 7) without any prior announcement, featuring Chappelle’s speech at Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C from June 20, 2022.The speech was part of a ceremony to rename the school’s theatre after the comedian.

The school’s decision, however, was criticised following the controversy around Chappelle’s Netflix special The Closer, where some material was perceived as transphobic.In November last year, Chappelle held a Q&A with Duke Ellington students following the special’s release, where some criticised him for his dismissal of complaints from the LGBTQ+ community.

One student reportedly called Chappelle “childish” and a “bigot” during the event.This confrontation with students is tackled in What’s In A Name, where he claims those critical of his comments in The Closer disregarded his “artistic nuance”.In the new special, Chappelle says: “All the kids were screaming and yelling, I remember, I said to the kids, I go, ‘Well, ok, well what do you guys think I did wrong?’ And a line formed.

These kids said everything about gender, and this and that and the other, but they didn’t say anything about art.“And this is my biggest gripe with this whole controversy with The Closer: that you cannot report on an artist’s work and remove artistic nuance from his words.

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