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Analyze how Far From Heaven employ mechanisms of cinematic identification.

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Assignment 3 Student Number: XXXYAN001 Name: Yan Zhen Xu Date: 27 September 2005 Course Code: FAM201S Tutor's name: Ian Rijsdijk Title: Analyze how Far From Heaven employ mechanisms of cinematic identification to position the spectator in relation to race, gender and sexuality. Consider who the spectator is invited to identify with, how identification is elicited, and why is it 'politically significant' to analyze which characters spectators are encouraged to identify with in films. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I have submitted TWO copies of my assignment, securely stapled, double-spaced and clearly labelled with my name, the course code, and my tutor's name. I have retained a copy of my work. Plagiarism Declaration 1. I know that plagiarism is wrong. Plagiarism is to use another's work and pretend that it is one's own. 2. I have used the ................................. convention for citation and referencing. Each significant contribution to, and quotation in, this assignment from the work(s) of other people has been attributed, and has been cited and referenced. 3. This assignment is my own work. 4. I have not allowed, and will not allow, anyone to copy my work with the intention of passing it off as his or her own work. Signature ______________________________ Far From Heaven This essay will discuss how cinematic identification is used to position the spectator in relation to race, gender and sexuality. "The experience of being able to put oneself so deeply into a character -feel oneself to be so like the character- that one can feel the same emotions and experience the same events as the character is supposed to be feeling and experiencing" (Ellis, J,1982: 43). ...read more.


Cathy is lead to an unhappy life because of what her community expects her to be. Far From Heaven also addresses the situation of non-whites in America. Even though the lead role is a white woman, Haynes also portrays the painful experiences of being a black man in a white supremacist society (Fanon, F, 1925:61). This allows the audience to identify with Raymond, especially in the scene where Raymond's daughter is thrown with stones by white boys. Haynes works on the audience's sympathy for Raymond and his daughter. It is also seen in the scene where Cathy says goodbye to Raymond in public and he tries to stop her. The public sees Raymond holding Cathy's arm which causes a stir. Tragically, at the same time, Cathy feels guilty yet ashamed to be seen with him in public. The audience may feel angry with Cathy's character, as she put Raymond in the position of being discriminated, yet she is too ashamed to do anything. The audience wants to see justice. "They physical characteristics that determined gender are with us from the day we are born and are changeable only by surgery, exactly how much of gender is socialized, is constructed, is debatable" (Woodward, S, Lecture notes: Gender, Sexuality and Ideology, 23 August 2005). Gender is socially constructed, yet the biology of a person is essential to determine the person's gender. It becomes a role that is almost wholly learned. It is how we define ourselves. Gender is a term developed often used as a contrast term to 'sex' to depict the socially constructed as apposed to which is biologically given. ...read more.


The key ideas behind queer cinema movement are diversity and fluidity. Directors are questioning the attitude, developed in the 1970s, that people should portray and promote positive images of gay and lesbian characters and situations (Nelmes, J, 2003:309). Frank has his happy ending, mention a few times above. It shows that the community is more understanding of his sexuality more than they are willing to with Cathy crossing over racial boundaries. Reference List: Course Readings: 1. Henry, Matthew, "He is a 'Bad Mother *$%@!#": Shaft and Contemporary Black Masculinity' in Journal of Popular Film and Television, Vol 30, No2. 2. Nelms, Jill, "Lesbian and Gay cinema", in An Introduction to Film Studies (3rd ed.), London: Routledge, 2003. 3. Nelmes, Jill, "Representing Gender and Sexuality", in An Introduction to Film Studies (3rd ed.), London: Routledge, 2003. 4. Stadler, J, Lecture Notes, Film, Feminism and the Gaze, University of Cape Town, 7 September 2005 5. Woodward, S, Lecture notes: Gender, Sexuality and Ideology, University of Cape Town, 23 August 2005). 6. Walters, Suzanna Danuta 'Visual Pressures: On gender and Looking' in Material Girls, University of California Press: Berkeley, 1995. Independent Research (Library): 7. Ellis, John, Visible fictions : Cinema, Television, Video. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1982. 8. Fanon, Frantz, "The Fact of Blackness", in Black Skin White Masks, Grove Press, Inc. New York, 1925. 9. Hollows, Joanne & Mark Jancovich (Eds.): Approaches to Popular Film. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1995. 10. Scott, Joan, Gender and the Politics of History, Columbia University Press, New York, 1988. 11. Zack, Naomi, "Mixed Black and White Race and Public Policy", in Race, Class, Gender, and Sexuality: The Big Questions, Blackwell Publishing, 1998. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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