Tuesday, January 21, 2020
AfricanAmerican Representation in the Media :: Free Essay Writer
AfricanAmerican Representation in the Media In Jacqueline Bobo's article, The Color Purple : Black Women as Cultural Readers, she discusses the way in which black women create meaning out of the mainstream text of the film The Color Purple. In Leslie B. Innis and Joe R. Feagin's article, The Cosby Show: The View From the Black Middle Class, they are examining black middle-class responses to the portrayal of black family life on The Cosby Show. In their respective articles, Bobo, and Innis and Feagin are investigating the representation of race, particularly African American race, in the mass media. The chief concerns of their investigations lie in how African Americans deal with the way these representations portray them individually and their social group as a whole. In this paper I will compare the issues in each study, analyze the larger sociopolitical implications of the media representations and apply a similar framework of concerns to my own reception analysis project. In Bobo's article, the chief concerns of the author are "the savage and brutal depiction of black men in the film", "black family instability", and the way that black women embrace the film and use their own reconstructed meaning of it to "empower themselves and their social group," (90,92). Film as a medium starts out with many potential limitations and problems when it comes to representing a whole race of people. No two people are exactly alike no matter what race they come from so there is no way one film can represent all peoples. Unfortunately, many people believe that a certain depiction of black people characterizes all black people, which is certainly not the case. This is very dangerous because this perpetuates stereotyping and discrimination. The viewing public pays for movies and therefore movie directors have to tailor their product so that the majority of viewers will enjoy, and agree with the ideas behind the film. The majority almost always means white America so e ven African American based movies are made for white audiences. Because of this, the representations of blacks in the medium of film are almost always white ideas of who black people are, not who they really are. The film The Color Purple has been the center of controversy since it was made in 1985. Many people feel the film is a terrible portrayal of black family life and that it is stereotypical in its depiction of black men as evil and brutal tyrants who imprison and mentally and verbally abuse woman.