"My task which I am trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word, to make you hear, to make you feel--it is, above all, to make you see." -- Joseph Conrad (1897)
In the thread of posts on dialogic, a question was posed by Thivai Abhor “Why do you think gangs, especially in mainstream American culture, has been so racialized and portrayed as solely those of the poorer classes?” this made me think back to the beginning of the movie when they when talking about how they couldn’t cross over certain streets without fear of being beaten, thrown in jail, or even killed. When I heard this it made me think of something worse than racial discrimination, it made me think of genocide. The Merriam-Webster dictionary describes “Genocide” as “: the deliberate and systematic destruction of a racial, political, or cultural group.” Gangs were born out of this urban genocide, when people feel like they have nowhere to turn they turn to each other, and then when they start to realize that they aren’t alike in all ways they turn on each other. It slowly becomes a war against rival gangs and not against “the man” anymore and it becomes even more of a struggle to get out because it is seen as leaving a “family.” As stated in the movie, part of the reason gangs thrive is because of the lack of education and understanding that gangs aren’t the end all and be all of one’s life. Gangs are being portrayed as folks from poorer classes because typically neighborhoods that house gangs don’t have the resources to teach kids how to not get involved into gangs, they don’t have teachers to educate them on what the word has to offer, and they don’t have parents to teach them any better because they too were/ are in the a gang. ( it wouldn't allow me to post under bloods and crips: made in america)
I. FEMALE STEREOTYPES IN FILMII. STEREOTYPESA. WHAT IS A STEREOTYPE?1. DEFINITION: THE OVER SIMPLIFICATION OF A CONCEPT, OPINION, OR IMAGE CAN BE POSITIVE OR NEGATIVEB. EFFECTS OF STEREOTYPES1. DEHUMANIZE INDIVIDUALS2. REDUCE A WIDE RANGE OF DIFFERENCES IN PEOPLE TO SIMPLISTIC CATEGORIZATIONS3. TRANSFORM ASSUMPTIONS ABOUT PARTICULAR GROUPS OF PEOPLE INTO "REALITIES"4. BE USED TO JUSTIFY THE POSITION OF THOSE IN POWER5. PERPETUATE SOCIAL PREJUDICE AND INEQUALITY (MEDIA AWARENESS NETWORK)C. FEMALE STEREOTYPES1. BINARY OPPOSITIONS: CHARACTER IS DEFINED ACCORDING TO THE “OTHER”a) Good girl vs Bad girlb) Virgin vs Whorec) Dependent vs Independent2. STEREOTYPICAL CHARACTERS: DRAW FROM WIDELY KNOWN CULTURAL TYPES FOR THEIR CHARACTERISTICS AND MANNERISMS a) Damsel in Distressb) Femme Fatalec) Gold-Diggerd) Ugly Duckling3. CHARACTERISTICS OF FEMALE STEREOTYPESa) Weaker Sex- docile, frail, smaller than male characters, cries or screams with little actual dialogueb) Bombshells- dim-witted, made-up, searching for man, sexy without knowledge, virginal, commonly laughed atc) Loud and looseD. THE WEAKER SEX1. FEMALES ARE TYPICALLY SHOWN AS DELICATE, NEEDY, VICTIMS2. RASHAMONa) The wife in many of the different accounts of the event she is the Damsel in Distress, a specter as the men make decisions for and about her. She is meek, silent, cries, and exudes “femininity” in most accounts.E. THE SEX OBJECT1. THIS CHARACTER IS USED FOR THE MALE CHARACTER PLEASURE OR TORTURE. SHE IS SOUGHT AFTER FROM THE MALE’S POINT OF VIEW.2. THE CEMETERY MANa) His love interest, the beautiful young widow, has little to no lines. She is highly sexualized from his perspective. There are many shots of her from his voyeuristic view.F. CONCHINTA1. A BINARY CHARACTER IN WHICH BOTH SIDES ARE ENACTED2. THE GOOD GIRL- SHE IS VIRGINAL, DOCILE, SWEET, BUT HAS DIALOGUE ASKING FOR RESPECT OFTEN AND MAINTAINING HER GIRL-WOMAN PERSONA3. THE BAD GIRL- SHE IS INDEPENDENT, STRONG WILLED, DEMANDS RESPECT, UNDOMESTICATED, AND PUSHES MAINSTREAM WOMAN “SHOULD-BES” WHICH THREATEN MATHUE’S IDEASa) She is punished severely for demanding and showing independence 4. OBSCURE OBJECT OF DESIRE TACKLES BOTH STEREOTYPES FROM A MALE PERSPECTIVE G. BREAKING DOWN STEREOTYPES 1. RECOGNIZING STEREOTYPESa) Is the statement about a group, subgroup, or individual?b) Have you heard or seen this depiction before?c) Is it derogatory or positive of an entire group?d) Consider the source2. WOMEN IN FILMa) Showing more women in powerful business roles without attributing negative attributes to them like bitchy, bossy, over-sexualized, or cold-heartedb) Dress women in “realistic” wardrobe c) Show the woman’s perspectived) Give female characters meaningful narrativee) Show woman as a unique human being without preconceived “should be’sH. CONCLUSIONWhen viewing movie realize stereotypes are deeply in grained in film making and recognize how the movie portrays the female characters. Use an open perspective or try in see the story from each characters perspective not just the one given. This might open your views on not only women’s issues but racial, sexual, and societal roles.
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