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

In her essay Arts of the Contact Zone, Mary Louise Pratt discusses the power of language use. In the film directed by Agnieszka Holland, titled Europa Europa, similar issues dealing with language use arise constantly with the emphasis on ide

Extracts from this document...


In her essay "Arts of the Contact Zone," Mary Louise Pratt discusses the power of language use. Pratt discusses how language use plays an important role in the world. She shows how language is used to describe a community's identity. She states that language is a key factor in the term transculturation, which she describes as a process by which a culture assimilates its own identity for the acceptance of another culture. She also argues that language is the key factor in which the style of a modern nation is imagined. In the film directed by Agnieszka Holland, titled Europa Europa, similar issues dealing with language use arise constantly with the emphasis on identity and selfhood. The film uses the main character, named Solomon Perel, to illustrate the previous issues. My reaction to the above issues shed light on the importance of language use shown by Agnieszka Holland and Mary Louise Pratt. Language use does indeed play a prominent factor in shaping our identity and selfhood in relation to the world around us. Pratt argues points in which the aspects of language are used to describe a community's identity. This, in further description, means that language use in communities is often described to link the community's occupants. The following passage emphasizes Pratt's postulated inappropriate use of language: Languages were seen as living in 'speech communities,' and these tended to be ...read more.


Acquiring a certain selfhood and an identity is shown similarly in the film with Perel. The scene takes place in bathroom of the German elite school, properly titled the Hitler Youth School. Perel known by his new identity, Josef Peters, yearns to have the complete identity and selfhood of the metropolitan community comprised of the German students at school. Perel's attempts of fitting into with the metropolitan culture go as far as to sewing together the foreskin over his penis. The following description is taken from after a two-day endured experience of this form of transculturation: Tying the foreskin was not successful. Pus had formed under the thread. After the thread was removed, the skin slipped back. I couldn't escape my own body. I still had to hide (Europa Europa scene). This form of behavior is shown by Perel to represent his yearning to assimilate into another culture. It shows the extreme process he took to assimilate into the German metropolitan culture. This scene is a great example of transculturation. Solomon is changing the appearance of his penis to resemble that of the German's. Perel is extremely cautious about his circumcision, as well with his Jewish hidden identity, in order to maintain his identity he understandings that some things must be sacrificed. ...read more.


Pratt argues the understanding of the issues of language using the terms of inclusion, identity, and selfhood. She wants the use of any particular group to take note of her previously made issues in hopes of shaping a better and greater world. Pratt's main focus from the issues spoken about is to get her readers to extrapolate deeper into the issues of the power of language. The use of language is shown greatly in Pratt's essay titled "Arts of the Contact Zone." She focuses on how language is described and shown through the style of a community. In addition to their descriptions and styles of a community, she takes a deeper look into the term she uses called transculturation which is accomplished by means of assimilation of one group's identity into another group's identity. Moreover Pratt emphasizes that the term transculturation is a key factor in identifying a particular identity with the use of language. Agnieszka Holland's film, Europa Europa, uses examples of a Jewish childhood experience in relation to the issues such as "limited," "sovereign" and "fraternal" dealt with language use. She uses the example of a Jewish child named Solomon Perel, from who assimilated into the German identity during the Nazi invasion. The essay along with the film shed great emphasis on language, which shape our identity and selfhood in relation to the world. ?? ?? ?? ?? 7 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Film Studies 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 University Degree Film Studies essays

  1. Cindy Sherman: Stereotype or Identity Crisis

    The light in this photo appears to come from the right and travels across the ebony desert of the bed sheet and emphasises the bare legs of Sherman and the highlights the contrast between the white shirt the woman is wearing.

  2. Discuss the idea of the film narrator/narration in relation to verbal to visual issues.

    We do not know of her disposition as anything other than the way Emma prescribes. The problem here is that we get only a biased viewpoint and often you experience the author's intervention too. The third-person narrative in The English Patient is different; the storyteller stands further away from the immediate action.

  1. Compare and contrast the uses and meanings of symbolism within the book and film ...

    of the second. For those who had read the text first, it would be understandable if they thought Roeg's 'flashback' maybe slightly unnecessary. After all, within a short story Du Maurier managed to convey a sense of paranoia, suspicion and eeriness perfectly well without having to either explain Christine's death


    Shaymalan thinks this because he has been interested in the supernatural since he was a little child this is because he was bought up listening to ghost stories.'The Sixth Sense' was very popular and topped up the u.s box office chart it is so successful because it has a major twist in the final scene that got everyone surprised.

  1. Taking one film which used a Shakespeare play as a source, discuss the uses ...

    This is an objective shot... shifts to single shots of the characters...camera placement is dictated by emphasis wanted... size of the character is dictated by emphasis...determined by emotional and story content.'13 The Language puts an emphasis on repetition of shots to establish relationships and the use of real time events.

  2. Censorship Essay

    It may also contain some very explicit language which will frequently mean sexual swearwords. 15 This means that the film or programme is unsuitable for anyone younger than 15. 15 films may have a fairly adult theme or contain scenes of sex, violence or drugs which, while not being particularly graphic, are unsuitable for younger teenagers.

  1. The Third Man - Morality

    motif There are visual reminders of childhood, as this is how Harry and Holly's relationship started.

  2. Thelma and Louise

    fact that she knows Thelma doesn't know any better and if she puts her in control then things might go wrong. Louise seems quite a bit older than Thelma and this might be the reason that she takes charge. When they set off Louise packs very lightly and very well organised.

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