• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Mitchells Gone With the Wind is a very important movie. It shows blacks in a light that went along with stereotypes at the time.

Extracts from this document...


Chloe McNease AAS 385 Professor McCall 7 April 2012 Gone With the Wind Gone with the Wind is a very important movie in American history. It tells the story of the Civil War and its aftermath, while at the same time providing the viewer with a very complicated love story. Intertwined in this story is the story of many black characters. They are stereotypical characters but at the same time they defy some of the beliefs about them. Mitchell presents us with many black stock characters such as the mammy, brute, and contented slave. They way they are portrayed however is in a very negative light. There are a few stock characters presented in this film, the main one being Mammy. She is portrayed as heavyset, masculine, sassy, and served as a surrogate mother to the O'Hara children. She had no full identity; she had no real name and no last name. She is the loyal housekeeper who remained with the O'Hara's even after she had been emancipated. Therefore, she also represents the contented slave who preferred to remain with their master. She is faithful and protective of the family. She is seen giving advice to Scarlett regarding Ashley, helping her with her garments, and making sassy remarks. Big Sam represented the physical black brute. He is big, strong, and a threat to white womanhood. His name show s what stock character he represents. Mitchell couldn't just name him Sam, she had to put the word big at the beginning to stress his size and how much of a threat he is. ...read more.


Blacks are still viewed as incapable of surviving without the white population and in dire need of their guidance. This is why in many movies today there is a black character that couldn't succeed without a white character (Safe House featuring Denzel Washington) On the other hand it challenges culture, specifically in the black community. The characters used in Gone with the Wind in no way reflect blacks today. In many black movies blacks defy stereotypes (Good Deeds, Seven Pounds). Blacks no longer act in the manners in the film. We don't feel that we need white people to survive and we don't do everything we possibly can to make them happy. We are not as afraid of them as we were portrayed to be in earlier films. This film contributes to the stereotypes about blacks. When a person watches this movie, whether it be back when the movie came out or today in 2012, they are probably going to leave with some type of stereotype. (Black men are threats, black women are angry, black people are meant to serve, and crimes against blacks don't matter) There is no strong sense of identity among these characters, except maybe to Mammy. She is the only one who shows some sort of personality in the film. She has her own opinions about things and isn't afraid to voice them. However, Mammy isn't given a real name which can be seen as one way of stripping her identity from her. ...read more.


This film could be compared to Birth of a Nation. Birth of a Nation tried to show what would happen if blacks were given freedom and power. It showed slaves being angry about slavery and wanting to be free. However, Gone with the Wind showed blacks being content with slavery. As mentioned in "Gone with the Wind and Hollywood's Racial Politics" blacks where depicted as being uninterested in freedom and were treated more as pets than people. They loved and needed the whites. This could possibly be seen as an answer to Birth of a Nation. Mitchell wanted to show that if blacks acted as they did in her movie, then everything would run smoothly, unlike things in Birth of a Nation when blacks became unruly when they got their first taste of freedom. The white damsel in distress in present in this film. Scarlett represents this damsel in the movie. She fits the description of a petite, white middle class woman. She is the damsel when she is attacked and Big Sam comes to her rescue and also when Prissy goes to Rhett asking for his help. Mitchell's Gone With the Wind is a very important movie. It shows blacks in a light that went along with stereotypes at the time. She did a very good job of going along with the beliefs of the time but a bad job when implying that blacks were content being servants. Although this movie could be seen as a bad portrayal blacks it is still a good film to analyze and critique. ?? ?? ?? ?? McNease 6 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Films section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Films essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Investigate and evaluate a piece of historical evidence, the Hollywood movie The Patriot starred ...

    4 star(s)

    Francis Marion was also a militia fighter, known as the "Swamp Fox", just like Martin was known amongst the British as the "ghost", and operated in South Carolina as well during the Revolutionary War. However, his base of operations was Snow's Island, which was located in the middle of the

  2. In the movie Cry Freedom, Steve Biko was a black activist and human rights ...

    The movie also shows acts of racism in Okafor 2 South Africa through the experience of Biko. As he is being banned and restricted from his own entitlement, and his voice is taken away, Biko is not held back by his ban and takes ownership of himself and his country.

  1. Film Critique for Romeo and Juliet

    knows the basics of the story including how Romeo and Juliet commit suicide using poison and knives. His scene is superior to Zeffirelli's, because Luhrmann's is new and exciting and has much more symbolism. In the old and traditional version, Romeo goes into the crypt and sees Juliet lying there, dead.

  2. Gone With The Wind

    The problem Scarlet encounters here is that Ashley is engaged to his cousin, Melanie Hamilton. Scarlet gets the idea in her head that if she tells Ashley that she loves him, he won't marry Melanie.

  1. How has Sam Raimi translated the theme of

    There needs to be action in a periodical comic. "The Origins Of Spiderman" are not dealt with much, apart from the first issue or when a new artist joins Marvel. It is however alluded to often, it is a central theme and there are frequent references to Uncle Ben and frequent moral dilemmas that Spiderman is placed into.

  2. Launching a movie successfully

    And, usually, functions and characteristics of products showed through the fancy movie techniques are more impressed and attractive. Under this circumstance, great interest as well as curiosity is stimulated. Movie stars have significantly extra value for the products. An obvious phenomenon in the modern society is the popularity of Idolatry.

  1. History of Movie Actors

    Despite the fact that the star system has long been a significant part of movie production, it was not instigated by the studios. In early days, the names of the leading actors were not even publicized and members of the audience wrote to the studios for information about their favorites.

  2. The Scarlet Letter

    She earns some money by selling her needlework but that is just enough to survive. Reverend Dimmesdale lives his life and he punishes himself because of what he has done. Roger Chillingworth follows him all the time because he wants to find out who the father of Pearl is and he thinks it is the Reverend.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work