Pushing Social Change and Toppling the Patriarchy
Television remains an important medium in exposing the viewing public to marginalized ideas, life styles, and varied ways of thinking. Unlike a film, which usually takes place over a self-contained two-hour period, television offers more screen time over the arch of seasons to explore characters and themes in deeply meaningful and personal ways. Aided by its structure and format, television programs are able to touch people, helping to change how we all view the world. In recent years, and amongst the explosion in popularity of platforms such as Hulu, Amazon, and Netflix, willing to take risks on shows and themes previously perceived as too risqué for television, programs have pushed the …show more content…
Jill Soloway, comedian, writer and director, and pioneering television icon, created Transparent to make the world a safer place for transgenders and other minorities. As Jill Soloway said at the 2016 Primetime Emmy Awards, she wants to “topple the patriarchy” and make transgenders and members of the LGBTQ community heroes (Huffington Post, 2016). Therefore, through examining the themes of gender identity and religion, both themes presented in the film and in class, Transparent comments on society’s current state and proposes meaningful change.
As Transparent begins, the opening credits offer a glimpse into the ideas of gender. From the lighting of a candle, symbolizing light into the darkness of life, to a shimmering blue dress—worn by a female impersonator—the opening credits reveal the process of becoming a transgender. Transitioning from a male to a female, or vice-versa, is a feat that only a few undertake. However, in the show Transparent, Mort Pfefferman transitions into Maura Pfefferman, a masculine figure who blossoms in femininity and bravery. While it is already a difficult task to come out as transgender, it is made even more difficult in this case because Maura has to deal with many family dramas revolving around her self-absorbed children.
Throughout the first season of Transparent, gender identity is explored and seen through the challenges that the characters face. For
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Today, Film and Television are among the most internationally supported commodities. Financially, their contributions are enormous: both industries are responsible for the circulation of billions of dollars each year. Since their respective explosions into the new media markets during the mid-twentieth century, film and television have produced consistently growing numbers of viewers and critics alike. Sparking debate over the nature of their viewing, film and television are now being questioned in social, political, and moral arenas for their potential impact on an audience. Critics claim that watching films or television is a passive activity in which the viewer becomes subconsciously
Watching television is such a common part of contemporary society, that most Americans adopted it as a part of their daily routine and watch television for at least an hour a day. Stanley Crouch, a poet, music and cultural critic, writes: “Whenever people pretentiously and proudly announce, “I don’t watch television,” they should follow it up with “I don’t look at America either”” (Masciotra 79). Television has become a part of many people’s lives. When the mass population watches the same television shows, movies, etc. they can all relate to each other, and thus unite them as an American. We look to TV shows to see how other people like us act on-screen. Aaron Morales, the author of American Mashup: A Popular Culture Reader states: “We watch movies, visit websites, and scour online profiles, all in an effort to glean from a variety of sources those traits that we feel best suit how we identify ourselves” (Morales 65). Movie characters can change the personalities and point of views in our society. Movies can inspire and motivate a society to change its social norms. For example, The Harry Potter Series is a well-known book that is popularized over the years through television advertisements. The reason Harry Potter is special is because he is like everyone else, but he is dealing with different problems. People can relate to the aspect of the characters and
Television executive Lauren Zalaznick, gave a presentation called “The conscience of television” for TED Talk which she discussed past five decades of the highest standing shows on air. Zalaznick runs studies which go to great lengths on how the topics of television shows changed from decade to decade and how viewers changed the reason of watching based on what was happening in the world. Television’s conscious effects our emotions, challenges our values, and influences our views on the world by what we choice to watch.
Growing up in America in the 50s and 60s was brutal for young trans people, let alone an transgender orphan born into poverty. Her mother killed herself when Sylvia was just three; her biological father was already long gone. Sylvia’s forbidding Venezuelan grandmother took her in, but despised Sylvia’s
In her book “Gender Outlaw: On Men, Woman, and the Rest of us,” Kate Bornstein goes over a lot of the major issues regarding gender awareness and identity politics. She talks about the ideas of labeling ones self, understanding gender differences, how people view laws, behaviors, and the medical and scientific privilege that make transitioning challenging for a lot of people. Bornstein touches on many of the issues today that affect trans people. She includes poetry, pictures, quotes, essays, and a play to raise questions and discuss the idea of gender. This is a great book to introduce and discuss the issues that affect the lives of trans people as they navigate and explore the lines that define gender.
They should have the right to dress as they choose, love who they choose, and be who they choose. It angers me that people believe differently considering they’ve never been in their shoes. In the “Paradoxes of Gender” Judith Lorber states, “We need to change biological sex in order to uphold the principle that biological sex determine one character”(41). Lorber's’ preconceived notion that one’s sex dictates their personality is flawed. It proves that society is unaccepting of people outside of the “norm”. Middle Sexes speaks to a wide variety of people but is mainly directed to transphobic people. However, the film isn’t very compelling because it doesn’t take the audience’s outlook into consideration. Through biological evidence and personal stories, the film strives to persuade transphobic people to be more accepting. Thomas attempts to persuade his target audience by referencing the science behind people who blur the lines between female and male. His unique approach is more convincing than an argument that stems from one’s opinions. However, his lack of counterarguments makes it difficult for the audience to relate.
Everyone goes through changes in life, especially ones that define who you are. In David Kaplan’s short story “Doe Season,” he portrays a young tomboyish girl that metamorphosis into a young woman over a short hunting trip. Not only does the young girl enjoy spending time with her father, but she enjoys the things that he does – shooting, camping, hunting. This is not typical of your average girl, or even a 9-year-old girl. Throughout the story there are symbols that show the audience Andy’s conflicts with herself and her gender or sexuality. It is also clear that she struggles with herself and her gender role in society.
The women’s movement began in the nineteenth century when groups of women began to speak out against the feeling of separation, inequality, and limits that seemed to be placed on women because of their sex (Debois 18). By combining two aspects of the past, ante-bellum reform politics and the anti-slavery movement, women were able to gain knowledge of leadership on how to deal with the Women’s Right Movement and with this knowledge led the way to transform women’s social standing (Dubois 23). Similarly, the movement that made the largest impact on American societies of the 1960’s and 1970’s was the Civil Right Movement, which in turn affected the women’s movement (Freeman 513). According to
Gloria Jean Watkins, known by her pen name Bell Hooks (the name of her great grandmother), was born September 25, 1952. She grew up to be the author of more than three dozen books, the topics of which range from gender, race, and class, to spirituality, and contemporary media. Hooks attended Stanford University, The University of Wisconsin, and The University of California, Santa Cruz, eventually earning her P.h.D. In her article, “Understanding Patriarchy,” Hooks argues that patriarchy isn’t only harmful to women, it’s harmful to men as well, in different ways. Patriarchy sets rigid gender roles that say women are to be docile, obedient, and nurturing, while men should be violent, dominating, and aggressive. This ideal greatly emotionally stunts men, and makes it so that they cannot express themselves in any way other than aggression. In this article, Hooks was very effective in explaining and giving examples as to why the patriarchy negatively affects both men and women, and that it is up to both to break free from these constraints and work together to end the patriarchy.
Feminism and feminist social theory unlike other theoretical perspectives is woman-centered and inter-disciplinary, hence promotes methods of achieving social justice. The feminism and feminist social theory takes into consideration three questions, what of the women? Why is the present social world as it is today? Additionally, how can the social world be changed to make it more just for the women and all people alike? In recent developments, feminist theorists have begun questioning the differences between women. The areas under question include race, ethnicity, class, age intersect, and gender. In summation, the feminist theory involves the concern with giving women world over voice, and highlighting how they have contributed to the
The idea of gender is important to a person, it is one of the important aspects about how we identify ourselves. Bodies may be our friends or enemies, a source of pain or pleasure, a place of liberation or domination, but they are also the material with which we experience and create gender (Schrock, Reid and Boyd 2005). In this assignment I will be analyzing the film, Transamerica through, concept of reflexive trans-embodiment. The film Transamerica is about a transgender women named Bree Osbourne and the journey she has with her son. Bree did not know about her son named Toby. Toby called Bree looking for his father to bail him out of jail. Bree bailed Toby out of jail but, did not tell him that she was his father. Instead she told
During an episode of The Cleveland Show a man sleeps with a character who turns out to be transgender and is literally sickened by this fact. Although not a television show, The Crying Game is partially responsible for bringing this idea to the general public. Serano references this movie in “Whipping Girl”, which shows a similar repulsed reaction when the character reveals she is physically male. Serano also states “the media hypersexualizes us by creating the impression that most trans women are sex workers or sexual deceivers” (Serano, 16). They are either deceptive by tricking us with their penises, or they are pathetic and ugly, which makes them look like a failed woman.
The purpose of this paper is to explore patriarchal values that reinforce violence towards women in intimate partner relationships. This paper argues that patriarchy and the social construction of masculinity reproduce male violence against women. The following sub-issues that that will be discussed are patriarchy, capitalism, the religion of Islam, and the construction of masculinity and femininity. All the sub-issues encompass patriarchy values which allows inmate partner violence.
Gender inequality has been an issue since long before the 1840s, when feminists finally brought the problem to light. Most ancient cultures were societies based on gender inequality, skewed towards male-dominance. Most societies are still mostly patriarchal, in fact. Patriarchy is the root of discrimination between sexes and genders and has been for a very long time.
"People who are liberal thinkers have been enslaved by these poseurs, these racketeers, people who are pretending to be liberal but who are in fact just naïve politically. I have been congratulated by women...who are so sick of being bullied by these sanctimonious puritans who call themselves feminists." --Camille Paglia