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Masculinity in Fight Club
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Masculinity in Fight Club

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    Masculinity in Fight Club Masculinity in Fight Club Presentation Transcript

    • MALE REPRESENTATION “ We’re designed to be hunters and we’re in a society of shopping” - Tyler Objectives: To analyse the representation of Masculinity in ‘Fight Club’. To outline and analyse the binary opposites that exist between the Narrator and Tyler.
    • Starter Annotate the body outline with the features, signifiers of traditional masculinity. Be as creative as you like
    • Masculinity: Social Context Feminism
      • Traditional male roles: Cowboy; Hunter; Defender; Achiever; Warrior; Breadwinner
      • Exposed as myths by the feminist movement
      • Men left without a clear identity after Feminism questioned the role of man
      • Traditional Male roles/unachievable images of strength ALSO imprisoned men
      • Repressed male rage – Frustration about:
      • The Feminization of Man and an increase in ‘consumption’
      • Repressed ‘Raw’ Masculinity
      • The dehumanizing effects of corporate consumer culture
    • The ‘New Man’
      • The ‘new man’ has lost touch with his masculine ‘core’
      • The ‘real man’ has been lost by consumerism and the media
      • Film depicts mens’ frustration at the media’s ‘feminisation’ of men
      • Mans obsession with consumerism has replaced traditional male symbols: strength, honour
      • Attacks lack of male role models – men raised by women due to men working
      • Fight Club attempts to reassert supposedly ‘obsolete’ Violent, Mindless Masculinity
    • The Narrator
      • As you watch the clip and with the knowledge we have already gained make notes on:
      • How is the Narrator presented to us a ‘man in crisis’?
      • What does the Narrator’s ‘Power Animal’ say about the state of contemporary masculinity?
    • Norton (The narrator)
      • Introduced by credits hurtling through his brain
      • The ‘Unreliable Narrator’ – gains audiences trust but is untrustworthy due to his mental state
      • The ‘new man’ character – he is ‘emasculated’
      • Consumerist: Job + Possessions + Clothes + Car = Happiness
      • His male status is an illusion – accumulation of possessions but no happiness
      • Traditional male role is lost – no male friends, no sexual partner, no libido, no ‘action’ job
      • Fantasises about dying
    • Mise en Scene & The Narrator
      • Mise en scene depicts the Narrator in a constricted, unsettled world
      • Spaces which constrain him/give a sense of confinement; Low ceilings cluttered sets; no colour (chiaroscuro)
      • TRAPPED in his suit
    • The Narrator’s ‘Power Animal’
      • What does the Narrator’s ‘Power Animal’ say about the state of contemporary masculinity?
      • Power Animals: Lion? Tiger? Shark? Penguin
      • Connotations of the Penguin:
      • Small; Incapable of Flight; Childish; Harmless; Tuxedo/wears a suit
      • Penguin is juxtaposed against Narrator’s dream of masculine empowerment
    • Remaining Men Together
      • We are introduced to two men that have attempted to conform to traditional roles of masculinity and failed.
      • In what ways have they both been emasculated?
    • Bob
      • Bob’s character is seen through the eyes of the ‘Unreliable Narrator’ –
      • Norton’s unstable perspective: How he see’s contemporary man:
      • A muscleman with breasts (Traditional Masculinity V’s the New Man)
      • In trying to attain ideal male physique gets breasts!
      • Gives maternal, feminine care to Narrator
    • Question
      • How does the intro to Fight Club present the ‘new man’?
      • 15 minutes – use examples.
    • Starter/Re-cap
      • Annotate the features of the new man presented to us by Fight Club all around the body outline.
      • You can be as creative as you like.
      Objectives: To analyse the representation of Masculinity in ‘Fight Club’. To outline and analyse the binary opposites that exist between the Narrator and Tyler.
    • Tyler
      • Watch the clip.
      • What role does Tyler play in the narrative?
      • What does he embody & how is he different to the Narrator?
    • Tyler
      • Played by Brad Pitt – the star most men would want to play them in a movie of their life
      • Male aspiration figure for the Narrator – his care-free, hot ideal alter ego: answers to nobody
      • Created from frustration and repressed rage
      • Introduced wearing sunglasses, leather jacket, chiseled jaw, spiked hair, a colourful juxtaposition against the ‘grey’ suited Narrator
      • Everything the narrator isn’t:
      • Charismatic, Sexually Dominant
      • Aggressive, Powerful, in charge of his own destiny
      • Tyler rejects consumerism/ materialistic lifestyle
    • Group Task
      • Create a list of the binary opposites that exist between the Narrator and Tyler.
      • Choose one of these and write up your notes in full sentences.
    • Male Binary Opposites
      • Occupies corporate spaces: Offices, Planes, Hotels
      • The same as everybody else – just another grey suit (‘A copy of a copy of a copy’)
      • Occupies shadowy underworld
      • Outlandish, Flamboyant, Unique, Original – link to Anti Globalization themes
    • Task
      • Choose one of the binary opposites we have discussed and write up your notes in full sentences.
    • Plenary
      • Share best bits.
      • Revisit objectives:
      Objectives: To analyse the representation of Masculinity in ‘Fight Club’. To outline and analyse the binary opposites that exist between the Narrator and Tyler.
    • Homework - The Fight Club
      • Watch the clip Fight Club initiation from the U drive. Make notes on these questions
      • What type of man attends Fight Club?
      • What seems to be the function of it in their lives?
      • Analyse Tyler’s speech – what could this be likened to?
      • How does this notion of masculinity differ from what we have previously been offered by the film?
    • The Fight Club
      • The creation of ‘The Fight Club’ plays an essential role in freeing the narrator from his crisis of masculinity.
      • Mostly filled by white middle class achievers who feel there material successes are empty, or working class men frustrated by their social status.
      • It is almost like a ‘trial by fire’ initiation ritual for the modern man.
      • The focus of fighting is endurance – taking the beating and defining one’s identity through the pain.
      • Scenes of physical displays of violence in an attempt to find inner ‘man’
      • Men resort back to a tribal, raw masculinity = another empty role
    • Question
      • What function does ‘The Fight Club’ play in the film?