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Masculinity in crisis

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Seven and the 1990's

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Masculinity in crisis

  1. 1. Masculinity in Crisis
  2. 2. History  During the 1990’s the concept of ‘masculinity’ was said to be in a crisis  Men were unsure what it meant to be ‘masculine’  Gender representations were changing and what was once deemed masculine was no longer available in society
  3. 3. todays sons to enter a completely different world than the one they ended up in”  During the 1990’s there was a vast economic expansion in America, however some of the methods that were used to achieve this expansion resulted in the ‘crisis in masculinity’  New jobs were created, coming at the expense of blue collar (manual labour) jobs  These jobs moved away from the traditional jobs of men (steel workers etc…) and placed men within the service industry. A job area generally reserved for women.
  4. 4. Shifting Cultures  Masculine spaces once filled with miners were converted to penthouse homes for the white collar workers  These men had no honourable war to fight, he didn’t have a job for life (offered by industry) and he couldn’t count on being a useful member of the family (women were gaining more power in the employment market)  Men could no longer find their place in the world
  5. 5. The Ornamental Man  Traditional Masculine elements were becoming commercial commodities  Muscular physique  Strength  Independence  Power  Sexual Prowess  These were marketed back to men and became part of the consumer culture of the 1990’s  Rather than achieve masculinity through their social status or job instead it became something to be bought through brands and products
  6. 6. Mills and Somerset  How could this apply to these two characters?
  7. 7. Masculinity and Seven  Mills is the ‘new man’ confused in his new role, attempting to live the outdated and failing ‘American Dream’  He attempts to fill traditional gender roles by being the breadwinner of the house and starting a family  However he is found wanting in this role being unable to protect his family from harm
  8. 8. Masculinity and Seven  Somerset is as equally as confused by the world as Mills, playing the role of the elder being unable to comprehend the changes in society  He rejects consumer culture, taking it as apathy and attempts to remove himself from it  In doing so he leaves Mill’s guideless/fatherless in a culture that has no place for traditional values.
  9. 9. With reference to your chosen American films, compare the extent to which their messages and values reflect the times in which they are made. Create a plan for this question comparing The Big Combo and Seven.

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