Polf11

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Polf11

  1. 1. October 25, 2011
  2. 2. The Politics of Difference in Films <ul><li>Race </li></ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul><ul><li>Sexual Preference </li></ul><ul><li>Religion </li></ul>The issue here is whether Hollywood-made or other types of films can directly confront these types of issues -- and, if so, under what conditions .
  3. 3. Race Relations in Films <ul><li>How are the different races portrayed on film? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Roles played by actors of different races </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Types of scripts selected for films about race relations (or seemingly unrelated topics) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Directors and producers of different races? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How has Hollywood tried to make amends for its history of reinforcing racism? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Examples of Films about African-Americans and Race Relations <ul><li>Roots (1977) </li></ul><ul><li>The Color Purple (1985) </li></ul><ul><li>Driving Miss Daisy (1989) </li></ul><ul><li>Do the Right Thing (1989) </li></ul><ul><li>Boyz N the Hood (1991) </li></ul><ul><li>New Jack City (1991) </li></ul><ul><li>Malcolm X (1992) </li></ul><ul><li>Amistad (1997) </li></ul>Contrast these films with earlier films that contained basically racist ideas: e.g. Step ‘n Fetchit or Amos and Andy characters
  5. 5. Films about Racism <ul><li>Gentlemen’s Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Chocolat </li></ul><ul><li>World of Suzie Wong </li></ul><ul><li>The Hurricane </li></ul><ul><li>Men of Honor </li></ul><ul><li>Jungle Fever </li></ul><ul><li>Mississippi Masala </li></ul><ul><li>American History X </li></ul><ul><li>Crash </li></ul>
  6. 6. Major African-American Actors/Actresses <ul><li>Paul Robeson </li></ul><ul><li>Dorothy Dandridge </li></ul><ul><li>Sidney Poitier </li></ul><ul><li>Denzel Washington </li></ul><ul><li>Lawrence Fishburn </li></ul><ul><li>Halle Berry </li></ul><ul><li>Morgan Freeman </li></ul><ul><li>Jamie Foxx </li></ul><ul><li>Forest Whitaker </li></ul>
  7. 7. African-American Directors <ul><li>Spike Lee </li></ul><ul><li>Melvin Van Peebles </li></ul><ul><li>Mario Van Peebles </li></ul><ul><li>Gordon Parks </li></ul><ul><li>John Singleton </li></ul><ul><li>Robert Townsend </li></ul><ul><li>Reginald Hudlin </li></ul><ul><li>Oz Scott </li></ul>
  8. 8. Gender Issues <ul><li>How are women portrayed (as opposed to men)? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Types of roles played by actresses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Types of scripts selected which deal with gender-related issues </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How has Hollywood tried to atone for past misdeeds in this area? </li></ul>
  9. 9. Key Ideas of Liberal Feminism in Film Studies <ul><li>Symbolic annihilation through the under-representation of women in films and other popular culture media. </li></ul><ul><li>Use of content analysis techniques to demonstrate the above. </li></ul><ul><li>In particular, under-representation of working and professional women in TV shows and movies. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Female Directors <ul><li>Leni Riefenstahl </li></ul><ul><li>Elaine May </li></ul><ul><li>Lina Wertmuller </li></ul><ul><li>Kathryn Bigelow </li></ul><ul><li>Diane Kurys </li></ul><ul><li>Jodie Foster </li></ul><ul><li>Barbara Streisand </li></ul><ul><li>Nora Ephron </li></ul><ul><li>Kathryn Bigelow </li></ul>So far, there are no female directors with a record of multiple blockbuster films -- mainly because most female directors have not been allowed to direct more than a few films.
  11. 11. Definition of Patriarchy <ul><li>“… a set of social relations between men, which have a material base, and which, though hierarchical, establish or create interdependence and solidarity among men that enable them to dominate women…” </li></ul>Source: H. Baehr as quoted in Strinati, p. 198
  12. 12. Feminist Films? <ul><li>Woman of the Year (1942) </li></ul><ul><li>Nine to Five (1980) </li></ul><ul><li>The World According to Garp (1982) </li></ul><ul><li>Fatal Attraction (1987) </li></ul><ul><li>Blue Steel (1990) </li></ul><ul><li>Thelma and Louise (1991) </li></ul><ul><li>G.I. Jane (1997) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Happy Hooker Movies <ul><li>Never on Sunday </li></ul><ul><li>Klute </li></ul><ul><li>Risky Business </li></ul><ul><li>Private Lessons </li></ul><ul><li>The Gift </li></ul><ul><li>Pretty Woman </li></ul>One of the last bastions of patriarchy: the idea that prostitutes like their jobs and are happy individuals.
  14. 14. Female Envy and Role Reversal Films <ul><li>Some Like It Hot </li></ul><ul><li>Tootsie </li></ul><ul><li>Mrs. Doubtfire </li></ul><ul><li>Mr. Mom </li></ul><ul><li>The Bird Cage (La Cage aux Folles) </li></ul>What these films have in common is the representation of males in traditional female roles and (in some of them) males masquerading as females.
  15. 15. Selfish Mother Movies <ul><li>Kramer vs. Kramer </li></ul><ul><li>Ordinary People </li></ul><ul><li>The World According to Garp </li></ul><ul><li>One True Thing </li></ul>Here the main question is how films portray motherhood in an age of increased visibility of feminism.
  16. 16. Families: Functional or Dysfunctional? <ul><li>Prevalence of divorce in U.S. society </li></ul><ul><li>Changing gender roles </li></ul><ul><li>Dealing with mental illness and disability inside the family </li></ul><ul><li>Teenage rebellion </li></ul><ul><li>Child abuse </li></ul>How do Hollywood films deal with these issues?

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