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Thelma and Louise Representation

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Thelma and Louise The media constructs a notion of what is considered normal in our society, to the exclusion of alternative views, by the way it uses stereotypes. In the 1990s there were a lot of cultural and social changes towards women. Society started to have a wider understanding and acceptance of gender representation. Women in the 1990s had gained much more power since the 1940s and it had finally started to be recognised and accepted. Women in the 1990s were standing up for their rights as the feminist issues were still carrying on from the 1980s. Women did have more rights, however they were not completely treated the same as men. This resulted in films like 'A Question of Silence' (1982) to be promoted and seen as a feminist film by the media. Audiences were not interested so the film didn't go main stream. The institution of Thelma and Louise knew it would happen again therefore they had to promote the film differently so it would sell by promoting it differently the publicity was played down on feminism. Even though the film was not promoted as a feminist film, Carrie Kouri the writer of Thelma and Louise still reflected her views on the social issues in society towards women in the film so the audience only got a female opinion to encourage the audience to take the women's side. ...read more.


While Thelma and Louise were out having an adventure the men were at home watching a romantic film which is associated with women. Most of the male characters In Thelma and Louise were represented as the less dominant gender. The audience sees this especially when the women blow up the truck driver's truck. Thelma and Louise had complete control over the situation and fooled the lorry driver in to thinking they wanted sex. The institution had done this to encode that men are only interested in sex and will treat women badly. In any other mainstream film during the 1990s, the women characters would have not had that type of power. The man who tried to rape Thelma was represented as another negative male role, which encodes to the audience that all men are like that in society and they are all interested In sex. In the scene where the man is trying to rape Thelma the audience see lots of close ups of what he's doing, the sounds and dark surroundings also build up emotion and tension of what's going to happen. 'In future when a woman is crying like that she ain't enjoying it' when Louise says that, the audience are supposed to believe she has been in that situation before which results in the audience taking the women's side even more. ...read more.


The problems that the women came across in the film were all obstacles women have to face in society. The audience sees that the women are strong characters because they over come the obstacles that arise and still remain happy whilst gaining freedom. In other films were women are represented to have power they are not seen as happy as well. Thelma and Louise encode that women can be in control and still be happy. The institution had to end the film with Thelma and Louise driving off a mountain so the audience believed that Thelma and Louise died. The institution had to do this because Thelma and Louise had committed crimes on their road trip and couldn't be seen to get away with it otherwise the institution could receive bad publicity which could have resulted in the film being banned or not going mainstream. The institution did not actually show Thelma and Louise dying to prevent a feeling of devastation from the audience. This resulted in people wearing t- shirts saying 'Thelma and Louise live for ever' the film clearly had a positive impact on the audience, which helped the institution to gain better publicity. However some feminist writers and groups did not have the same positive opinions. This was because the film was not promoted as a feminist film and had a male director. ...read more.

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