Saturday, 30 October 2010

Hotel Babylon- How is Ethnicity represented in the clip?

Throughout the short clip many different ethnic stereotypes are presented. It starts off looking at the ethnicity of black people. The scene is set at the hotel's swimming pool area. It opens with a pan, and then the camera moves into a close up which we then begin to see shot reverse shot. The lighting is dimmed and the music appears to be calm, sensual and creates a very relaxed feel. As the two characters are introduced we are able to see that they are in fact binary opposites. One of the men is presented as a casual laid back character, that uses a lot of slang, and seems to prioritise party's, girls and drugs over work. This character is also wearing very little clothing in comparison to the other which may be representing lower status.Whereas the other character is smart and appears to come across quite anxious and nervous as the above character is addressing him. The more casual character states that they haven't met for 7 years and this may lead to assumptions that the other character used to have a past like himself, but got out of that and changed for the best. This looks at the two different sides that blacks are tend to be stereotyped as.

We are the introduced to two french maids as the next stereotypes to ethnicity. The scene opens with a mid-shot and this ables us to recognise their occupations as they have their work trolleys. The camera then goes into a close up onto the room service card which shows two stars which is a code for him 'paying double for double'. The maids have stereotypical French accents and seem to only be able to use vocabulary which relates to their work. As the maids enter the room we become to understand of what the term 'he pays double for double means' the maids begin to dance for extra money. This is very stereotypical as it seems a foreign worker will do anything to make any extra cash. The music at this point is a very cheesy pop song, that also appears to have french lyrics which is in relation to the maids themselves. Whilst they are dancing the camera enters a mid shot and switches from this to a close up of the Japanese characters eyes which are watching them.

The Japanese character portrays a very typical ethnic stereotype. First of all we get a mid shot of the man sitting on his bed in a dressing gown. This automatically gets the audience assuming he may be slightly 'pervy' or waiting to expect something from the maids. The camera then moves into a close up on to the two piles of money for each maid on the table. As the maids begin to dance we then once again experience shot reverse shot. The stereotype that the Japanese are very wealthy is straight away met and made very clear by this shot. Although he is paying workers extra cash for them to strip and dance, which follows a clear stereotype of him being dirty and pervy his room appears to be extremely tidy and well presented. The Japanese are known for keeping their belongings very tidy and clean so we are shown another stereotypical view of this particular ethnicity. The camera focuses on the characters eyes which are focused on the maids body whilst she is undressing this uses a close up. This perfectly represents that he is a character fascinated and thoroughly enjoying something that he should not be looking at.

The next part of the scene we are shown is set in the kitchen of the hotel, which focuses on on two main characters which appear to be the head chefs.The first chef is introduced with a mid shot which switches from him and the British chef gives the impression that they are opponents in the kitchen. The ethnic of this chef is Italian. The typical stereotype of this ethnicity would be that they have a strong accent, very overly friendly and generally well dressed. We then get a mid shot of the two chefs standing next to each other being very pleasant which is clearly an act. From this shot it is easy to identify the two stereotypes. The British chef is overweight, tall, has much paler skin and dressed in white in comparison to this the Italian chef is skinny, relatively small, has a dark skin tone, and dressed in black. The two characters being dressed in black and white may be signifying good and bad between the two ethnics. Later on after we have been introduced to the characters an argument takes place, during this the background music gets faster which builds even more tension between the two characters. The English chef seems rather pathetic and hopeless at this point in time which represents what a typical overweight Brit would be stereotyped as. On the other hand the Italian picks up a knife, and at this point we see a close up from the camera which puts emphasis on the fact that the character is dangerous. This is following the stereotype which plays on men from foreign countries being very sneaky and unreliable.

To conclude,ethnicity is very clearly represented in the clip by using stereotypes which are usually associated with a certain type of ethnic. The clip does not explore any contrasts which may go against a typical stereotype and instead sticks to making each characters role very predictable due to their ethnic.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Stereotypical Ethnicity- British TV Dramas

Within the group we were each given a area to focus on regarding stereotypes. I am working on the stereotype of Ethnicity, the task that we were given is to choose a character from a British TV Drama that matches the stereotypical view of ethnicity.

Within a TV Drama or Series a stereotype of Ethicity can come in different forms. One example would be characters from a different race such as asian or african carribean would be stereotyped as being thug like, a bad influence, lazy, unwilling to work, and associated with gangs and general bad behaviour. On the other hand their are stereotypes which have very strong morals and religious views, and are always out to achieve their very best. The character that i have chosen to write this peice on is 'Chesney Karib' from the TV series Shameless. The program is based on the 'Chatsworth Council Estate' in Manchester which the series then follows the lives of The Maguire and The Gallagher familys. The character Chesney is the teenage son of two parents which own the local corner shop.

Firstly Chesney is involved in plot which of course does follow a typical stereotype. A nomination came about to vote for a local mayor of the Chatsworth Estate. Chesney playing the character of a teenage muslim who went forward as a candidate and did all he could and went especially out of his way to be allocated this spot. This is following the sterotype of acheiving a high status within a community. Even though this may not seem very much of a high status. It still means he has slighty more power than everyone else within the society and has also achieved slightly more than any one else at that moment in time.

Chesney uses his campaign for a different reason though. This is to fund an elderly Pakistani women he has connections with for her to take a British Citizenship Test. This again appears that he is trying to help and achieve the best at all times. Which is still following the stereotype. He is also attempting to do right within his family and his particular ethnic group. This follows the typical stereotype that Asians may just always tend to do what is right by there family and their own community.

On the other hand later on in the series Chesney takes part in a plot that follows the path of the other stereotype that would be associated with ethnicty. In a moment of rage within the programme Chesney knocks out his father. This is totally portraying the thug like stereotype. He cannot control his anger at this point and storms out of his house wearing hooded clothing and ends up walking around the streets. At this time he seems very unnapproachable and many would assume that he is out to cause trouble.

After this point in the programme, the character Chesney begins to steal from his own family, stops working in the family business and becomes part of a gang. This totally supports today's typical stereotype of ethnicity as it backs up the way that they are put into a catogory of being lazy, unwilling to work, part of a gang and generally a bad influence.

Overall Chesney appears to be the character which can be associated with several parts of stereotypical ethicity. In this case it explores the two different sides that may appear and people may expect of a character of this type. Chesney acts how people would portrait a teenager of different race part of an ethnic group by first of all doing all good to support his community but then contrasting this by acting lazy, rude, and generally very 'yob' like.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

How does Calvin Klein represent Males in adverts?

Calvin Klein in the above advert represents males in a way that we would not usually assume. The model in this photo does not follow the typical stereotype of a man which would be strong and in control. Instead the model has been placed into a pose which portraits him to look vulnerable and lost. The reason for this is his arms are loosely draped down the side of his body and they are also looking 'limp'.

I think that the advertisement itself is aimed at both women and men. The reason for this being aimed at the male population would be mainly his posture and the way that his body is structured. His body is generally well toned, but not so much that it is unachievable for a man to reach. The main focus and attention of the advert appears to be on the top half of his body rather than the lower half. Even the label is based nearer the top of the photo. There is no emphasis around the groin area where the actual product is being advertised and this is because it avoids any intimidation that men might feel if it was overly emphasised. The image itself is generally simple, and this is relates to the typical stereotype of man being plain and not overly exciting.

The picture is also represented in a way that a woman would be pleased to look at. For example he is presented with well groomed hair that most women would agree is nice. It has a sophisticated look about it which definitely is also another reason for appeal. The logo which has been added to the photo by Calvin Klein is positioned for the womans benefit. It catches the eye which then gets drawn in to look at the models body. Something else to notice about the advertisment itself that the logo has been place overlapping the model rather than to the side or underneath. This once again links to the thoughts of him being vunerable and not in control. It seems as if the logo is dominating him, which may have a connection with the thoughts that the advert would like women to generate.

Linking this to the female Calvin Klein advert it seems as if the two genders have switched roles. What i mean by this is that the female's pose has much more attitude and actually appears quite masculine. Whereas the photo above has elements of which we expect to see in the female advertisement. The reason for this may be that each advert wants to appeal to both genders rather than just the one for the sexual appeal. This is done by using models that are ideal aspirations, but using features that also attract the same sex to have postive opinions about the advert. So overall i do think that that models are objectified but only in some ways intended to come across sexually impowered.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Trevor Millum

Millum also identified 5 different types of images.

This is the Seductive facial expression. Eyes are less wide and the expression tends to be less reserved but still presented as confident.

The Carefree pose. This consist of the person in the imagine being nymph like and looking healthy and active. They also have to look vibrant and an outdoor girl. The most important part is that they are smiling or grinning.

An image presented in this way would be named Practical. The woman has to be concentrating and engaged in business. As you can see from the example the mouth is closed and the eyes are directed at an object. The hair is often tied back or a shorter style.

This is an example of a Catalogue pose. The woman looks neutral, articficial and slightly wax like. The features are able to be in any position but facial expression has to be wide eyes and smiling. The personality tends to be removed.

Facial Expressions- Marjorie Ferguson

Ferguson identified four different types of facial expressions on the front cover of British women magazines.

This would be what is known as the Chocolate Box. This pose consists of a half smile, lips together or slightly parted so the teeth are barely visible and lastly a full or three quarters of the face to the camera. Overall generally a sweet pose, hence the name. The effect that is created from this expression is uniqueness and also an uniformity of beauty.

This is what is called the Invitational pose. The main focus is the emphasis on the eyes, which looks inviting. The mouth has to be shut with a small hint of a smile. The head is either to one side, or looking back over the shoulder at the camera, as you can see from the example. The effect created from this pose is the suggestion of mischieve and rather than a sexual promise, it's more a hint of contact.

The Super-smiler. This pose has to contain a full face which contains a wide open and toothy smile. The head can either be thrusted forward, or the chin can be thrown back slightly. The hair in the photo often looks softley wind blown. The effect created by this facial expression and body language is a slightly aggressive and 'look at me' attitude.

This is known as the Romantic or Sexual pose. It includes a male or a female, often two-somes. The photo itself needs to be dreamy, sensual and sexual. The model tends to be heavy lidded to create this effect. The main effect created by that the person in the photo is presenting themself as 'available'.

Laura Mulvey- The Male Gaze

Laura Muvley is a feminist who identified 'The Male Gaze' itself. This is men dressing and positioning camera angles on woman deliberately in the way in which most men would appreiciate to see them.

3 areas of the gaze
- How men look at women
- How women look at themselves
- How women look at other women

The concept of the gaze is one that deals with how an audience views the people presented. Film audiences have to view characters from the perspective of a hetrosexual male.

Features of the Male Gaze
- Camera lingers on the curves of the female body
- Events which occur to women are presented largely in the context of a mans reaction to the events
- Regulates women to the status of objects.
- The female viewer must experience the narrative secondarily

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Stereotype Presentations

As a class we were put into pairs to create a Prezi Powerpoint on one of the seven re-presentation areas. We also had to relate these to stereotyping and stereotypical tv and film to the area we were specified. In the group we watched the end results and learnt the following information about each area.

Age-A baby or very young child is typically stereotyped that they cry, moan and scream a lot. Or the opposite which is that they are very cute and cuddley. On the other end of the scale eldery or 'old people' are classed as often being insane, helpless or even wise.Infact the two stereotypes are different extremes but do actually have in common that they are helpless and need to be cared for by someone. This is the symbolic code between the two age groups.
A clip of Vicky Pollard, from Little Britain was shown to give an example of an over exaggurated teenage stereotype. This stereotype includes teenagers being classed as, short tempered, loud, gobby, rude, bad grammar and committing a crime. We were then shown a picture of a much calmer, hardworking and outgoing teenager which is the opposite to the previous clip.

Regional Identity-The North of the country stereotypically are known for moaning and being miserable about how bad their every day lives are. Something is that is classed with Northerners is that they aren't the brightest bunch of people.Many citizens up North are associated with farming or working in factories due to the stereotype of not being extremely clever.
The opposite part of the country in the South is stereotype with a city design which tends to be grey and monotone. For example 'Hotel Babylon' the characters are dressed with sophistication and look very money based.
The country side is stereotyped to having a different lifestyle to everyone else which is much more relaxed and casual. The pictures that we were shown of characters from tv series bases in the countryside appeared to look much more casual, and down to earth in the way in which they were presented.

Sexuality -A male homosexual stereotype is assosiated with tightly fitting clothes, being a drama queen, and a lack of interest in sport unlike a straight stereotyped male. For example in Little Britain exaggurate a gay stereotype which is always put infront of a dark background to make him stand out much more and seem as femine as possible.
On the other hand a female homosexual stereotype is pretty much the oppostite of a the above stereotype. For example they are assumed to be butch, have deep voices, and enjoy playing sport. A contrast to this is Lindsay Lohan as she would not be stereotyped as a lebsian due to the clothing she is wearing. Many tv shows focus on plots which show homosexuals finding out about their sexuality, telling people, and dealing with the reactions.

Ability and Disabilty-In some of the clips we watched during this presentation on ability and disabilty it stereotypically showed the disabled in housewear. The location of a disabled is also very stereotypical as they are assosiated with living in bungalows, or shabby areas. An example of this was Andy and Lou from Little Britain. In many TV programmes when a character has a disability it is emphasised more than it would be in the real word, this comes across slighly critisizing. The camera angle that i picked up whilst watching and looking at photos of the disabled was that it will be commonly looking down on the character which influences the audience to think of the stereotype which is that they are helpless and small. Something else which implies this is that a helper is always in the frame which once again stereotypes that they are much less capable than everyone else. Lastly, a personality trait that is stereotypical associated with a disabled person tends to be either that they are stupid or less intelligent than others or that they are evil and bitter.

Gender-The stereotypical view that we were given of a man was dressed in trousers, short hair, more money, and much stronger. The contrasting stereotype of a woman is usually, dressed in skirts and dresser, long hair, the housewife, and less able to defend herself.
Males are always portrait as the more dominant character within TV programmes and are stereotypically known as the 'supporters' and 'protectors'. A female which is reguarly portrait on TV are crying and overreacting, which is then resolved by being restrained by a man. Another stereotypical view on men as a gender is that they are associated with fighting. The man is seen as someone who is supposed to understand the situation which a woman is in. Some programmes do not show gender which is represnetative of everyday life, for example Hollyoaks as the characters are models and something to look at rather than realistic figures. Something else that is now very stereotypical is that when a woman is acting independantly and fighting her own battles, this may be frowned up on and seen as a bad situation.

Film Habits Questionnaire

Film Habits Questionnaire

Narrative Codes- Roland Barthes

At the beginning of the lesson we learnt a little bit about the man Roland Barthes himself. He was a semiologist, which means he basically studied different texts for a living.
When a story is being told the narrative either has to be open or closed.

Open Narrative-Can be unravelled in many different ways, and lead to many different things. For examples many soaps have any open narrative like Eastenders or Hollyoaks.
Closed Narrative- There is only one obvious thread to pull on. Which means that only one outcome could be possible instead of various choices. Examples of this would be children's programmes as they nearly 100% of the time finish with a happy ending.

In media there are different codes. These examples explain what each code contains:

Action Code- Applies to any action that implies a further narrative or action. An example of this would be if someone draws a gun, something else has to take place next.
Enigma Code- This refers to any element in a story that is not explained, and therefore exists as an enigma for the audience, raising question that demand an explanation.
The Semantic Code- An element in a text that suggests a particular, and often additional meaning. For example it may say something, but wants to imply a completely different thing.
The Cultural Code- Any element in a narrative that refers to a 'science or body of knowledge'. In other words the Cultural Code tends to point out our shared knowledge about the way in which the world works.
The Symbolic Code- A code which is very difficult to be explained. The code that shows what makes the different within certain things.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Rushmore- Is Max a stereotypical teenager?

I think that is made clear from watching the montage that Max would not come under the class of what is supposedly your stereotypical teenager. Just from viewing the short montage clip it is obvious the Max does many more extra curricular clubs than what would be expected of the usual stereotypcial teenager. As the years have gone by not the best picture has been created of what would a stereotypical teenager actually be classed as. The image which is tended to be portrayed of a teenager is not necesserily entirely true and most likely does not apply to the majority of teenagers themselves. It is assumed that a teenagers prioritys is to smoke, drink alchohol, take drugs, hang around on street corners, and commit general anti-social behaviour.

At the beginning of the montage we may assume that Max would be classed as your typical teenager. We then begin to see that he appears to be a leader of many unusual and definitely not typical clubs. By taking note of all the types of clubs he is a part of, it becomes much clearer that Max is certainly not your typical teenager and a picture begins to be created that he may even be a social outcast and extremely lacking in friendship. By just looking at the photo above, it shows Max in a mid shot and in the center of two other characters. His postion being central shows that he does like to be the at the main point of attention, and this links back to the way in which he is in control of many clubs and groups. I think that his body language just from this one photo shows that he thinks highly of him self in comparison to others around him. Also from the montage we get to see this more and more throughout every club he is involved in.

I noticed when watching the montage, every type of person that he hangs around with, involved in these groups are allyounger than him. This is not usually typical of a teenager to hang around with people who have a large age gap in comparison to yourself. The reason why Max may be part of all these groups is that it is the only time he may feel he can gain respect from others as they are younger and could possibly look at him as a role model. Once again relating back to the picture, his dress sense is much smarter than a typical teen would be expected. This could be that he thinks of himself superior and once again wants younger age people to follow in his footsteps to show that he has a place in society.

If we were to step back and look at this montage from a completely different perspective, it could seem as if he is very much the typical teenager. For example from his parents view he would seem a very sociable and an outgoing character that seems to want to be involved all the time. He obviously cares a lot about his education and wants to exceed to the very best that he can, which is realistcally what most teenagers would love to do. It would also seem that Max is having a lot of fun doing these activities as it may be the only place he feels comfortable with his social status. In the photo, Max is the Russian Leader of the 'Model United Nations'. This could largely relate to America and Russia being the two largest economies in the world. He feels as if he is not accepted in his own country and does not have a high enough status to take any control, so therefore he then heads to the other option which would be Russia, because he thinks he would have a much more appreciated status. Something to notice is that Max is wearing a stereotypical Russian hat in the photo, which may assume his little knowledge of their culture and countrry. So this could be classed as a very stereotypical teenager thing to do.

Overall, i do not think Max is a stereotypical teenager.