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Global Media: Flows and Counter-flows - Essay Example

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Global Media: Flows and Counter-flows

Global media and capitalist monoculture incorporate all minor cultures into the single global capitalist system; going even further than this, the production process and consumer tastes become uniform. Thus, there is an ongoing process of standardization of tastes alongside with deterritorialization. Unification of cultures gradually replaces culturally thick places that provide an individual with a sense of identity. The revolution effect of globalization is stimulated by technological innovation, as scholars point out, the process is irreversible and irresistible (Cryle, 2004). Westernization of the world results in a conflict between local and global forces: there is a distinct increase in nationalistic movements that resist global economy attempting to keep cultural identity. The two African films of Jean-Pierre Bekolo "Quartier Mozart" and "Aristotle's Plot" concentrate on the issue of homogenous culture alongside with shortcomings of this global tendency.
African filmmakers tend to view themselves as contemporary African artists: the value of art is determined by the intrinsic properties alongside with beauty and functional role in the framework of society, culture, and identity. In contrast with Western filmmakers, African counterparts actively participate in the process of socio-political reconstruction of African society (Maingard, 1994). African filmmakers constitute intellectual elite with high awareness of not only implicit dynamics of own society, but also of the global tendencies of the world with which it interacts. Populist and civic character of films produced by African filmmakers is based on the social ideals of individual and collective freedom, democracy and sustainable development based on African cultural foundations (Molloy, 2001). In "Quartier Mozart" Jean-Pierre Bekolo tells the story of a young girl nicknamed Queen of the 'Hood. The teenager is eager to learn about common sexual practices alongside with preoccupations of the local neighborhood. The girl was tuned into a young man by a witch, Maman Thekla, in order to give her an opportunity to receive first hand experience and knowledge about gender politics. The witch also turned herself into a man and made male genitals disappear. According to her, this is the only way to get rid of male pride. Thus, the gender relationships are questioned. Democratic, equal, free relationships are emphasized. Realizing the new sexual identity, Queen of the Hood wants to expose Mad Dog, the local police chief, who uses tradition he has no clue about to marry a second wife that is much younger then his first one by simply throwing his present wife away. The leader of the young men, who scores but still cannot imagine love as part of scoring, is also exposed by the Queen. Thus, Jean-Pierre Bekolo satirizes obsession with sex and control alongside with masculine pretension.
Jean-Pierre Bekolo raises issues unique for African media. The filmmaker questions the belief in violence as the legitimate solution of a conflict that is still present in South Africa. South Africa's war culture that mobilizes traditional image of men as protectors and women as those being protected, not only stimulates extensive aggression, but also contributes to the view of women as a "thing" that is protected (Murdock, 1959). Going even further then this, the issue of policing forces that are capable of rape, detention without trial, and tortures are ...Show more


The world tendency to globalization resulted in formation of network connections that cut across cultural and traditional boundaries. While the obvious layers of connectivity include circulation of goods and capital, the underlying issues can be as deep as formation of identity by global media…
Author : rhowell
Global Media: Flows and Counter-flows essay example
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