• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9
  10. 10
    10
  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Maths
  • Word count: 2888

Fight Club a 'devastating critique of American materialist, consumer culture', or a film about 'the monstrous thrill of violence and the fragility of men'? (Rombes: 1999).

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Richard Adams

Takeaway Examination, March 2005

305CMC Film Studies

Is Fight Club a ‘devastating critique of American materialist, consumer culture’, or a film about ‘the monstrous thrill of violence and the fragility of men’? (Rombes: 1999).

It is easy to understand how and why many who view Fight Club (Fincher, 1999) would argue that is in essence a critique of post modern consumer culture within America or indeed the western world. After all we are faced with Character(s) Jack (Edward Norton) who seems to gain no cultural sustenance from the world in which he inhabits. More over it seems to do him harm in the form of insomnia. This coupled with his obsession with Ikea and material goods leads to the creation of Tyler (Brad Pit). Whose apparent goal is the destruction of the capitalist system? The film seems littered with examples of anti consumer, anti capitalist motifs. The blowing up of credit card companies, the vandalising of coffee shops etc etc. But, is there more to the narrative of fight club? Its extreme use of violence on one hand might seem to represent the desperate act of those trapped deep within the void of consumer culture driven to violence in a desperate bid to escape; to re claim some sense of individualism. This view does however ignore many key issues regarding Fight Club and gender. Especially those of masculinity and femininity, and the positions they occupy within the film.

Primarily using the work of  Laura Mulvey and Henry A. Giroux I believe that it is clear to see that the themes and issues which are central to Fight Club are based primarily on gender.

...read more.

Middle

Fight Club trying to suggest that each member of staff in the Sarbucks they attacked now has the chance to go and achieve what they individually want to achieve? If that is the case isn’t the end result a society based on competition and economical survival of the fittest? Is that the essence of capitalism? Don’t we have that now? Or is the actual point that it is alright to compete and achieve our goals; as long as it is only the men doing it? “Fight Club functions less as a critique of capitalism than as a defence of authoritarian masculinity” (Giroux, 2000:10) When Tyler Put the Gun to Raymond the clerks head he may as well have come right out and said “you are a man you shouldn’t be doing such degrading work-that is for women to do”.

         The roles on which men and women are often portray within film narratives is an area which Laura Mulvey has explored in her essay (first published in 1975) ‘Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema’. Within this piece of work Mulvey outlines that both men and women occupy different areas of the text. Women are defined by Mulvey as being the “object of the look and men as being in control of the gaze” (Nelmes, 2003:254). This in essence places the men and women as being in binary opposition to one another. This is not to suggest that men are not looked at during the film of course this would be futile. But what Mulvey suggests is that the men are looked at by other men, not in terms of object but as a projection of who we would like to be.

...read more.

Conclusion

“In Short, Fight Club provides no understanding of how gendered hierarchies mediated by misogynist psychic economy encourages male violence against women. In short, male violence in this film appears directly linked to fostering those ideological conditions that justify abuse towards women by linking masculinity exclusively to expressions of violence and defining male identity against everything that is feminine. (2000:12)


Bibliography

Cohen, S & Hark, I R. (ed’s). 1993 Screening The Male: Exploring Masculinities In Hollywood Cinema. Routledge: London.

Giroux, H A. 2000. Private Satisfactions and Public Disorders: Fight Club, Patriarchy and the Patriarchy and the Politics of Masculine Violence. Dr. Henry A. Giroux Online Articles. henrygiroux.com.

Mulvey, M. 1989. Visual And Other Pleasures. Macmillan: Basingstoke.

Nelmes, J (ed) 2003. An Introduction To Film Studies (Third Edition) Routledge: London

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Height and Weight of Pupils and other Mayfield High School investigations 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 GCSE Height and Weight of Pupils and other Mayfield High School investigations essays

  1. the representation of women in Greek tragedies

    The audience witnesses Medea's intellect in her verbal manipulation of Jason. In her attempt to gain extra time to execute her plan against the House of Creon she pretends to sympathize with the man who she intends to take retribution.

  2. the representation of women in the Greek tragedies

    Although initially, Medea's manipulative qualities appear to engage in the stereotype that this was 'typical' of women, the audience cannot condemn her for using this strategy. Confronted with her predicament, Medea has nothing to depend on but what might be termed as traditional female wiles.

  1. Q2 With detailed reference to your specific area of study, analyse and discuss the ...

    Mulvey's ideas of the "controlling male gaze" are partly supported by statistical analysis of the gender divisions in film making. Martha Lauzen (2003) analysed the % of women employed on making the top 250 American films each year between 1998 and 2002.

  2. In Kyra D. Gaunts article, Translating Double-Dutch to Hip-Hop: The Musical Vernacular of Black ...

    For example, TLC's song "WaterFall" and Salt-N-Pepa's: "Let's Talk about Sex," are blatant safe sex messages to urban culture. By emphasizing condom use, these women are preventing and eliminating the myth behind teen pregnancy (Gaunt, 257).

  1. Through analysis of "Indiana Jones- Raiders of the lost Ark" and "Mr. and Mrs. ...

    is certainly males; the age group could vary from anything between young teenagers to elderly men. These two films both have stereotypical views of both the male and the female, but these films were from earlier decades. Consequently, this doesn't prove whether or not the representation of gender in the media today is like that.

  2. Nasonia Genetics -Introduction to the Jewel Wasp

    One looks for the presence of an ovipositor in the distal end of the abdomen. In N. vitripennis, males can also be distinguished by small wing pads. Handling Adults: Adults are very "user friendly" and can be sorted and used in experiments without anesthetization.

  1. I believe that women are less threatening and more polite in conversation with members ...

    For comparative purposes I have chosen to look at dialogue between the host and members of the opposite sex, this also includes interaction from people with opposing views. Although, I have to take into consideration that the hosts may use their position of power, to influence the respondents in what they say and when.

  2. The effect of gender on strength and flexibility.

    The larger the muscles, the stronger the person; this is why most men are stronger than most women. Method I have carried out 4 tests. All of test was done within 20 minutes; first I was going to measure all male then move to female subjects data but still the

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