Culture has been developing through the influences of textual information since the availability of books became more easily access with the advent of the printing press. The influences of film has changed the nature of expectations that people have in emotional relationships with each other with emphasis on the way that emotions were shown in the latter half of the 20th century. The influence of film is evident through many different types of visual references. Fashion, home design, and the visual accessories of life are evident in every public place one goes to experience modern life. Modern life is filled with visual references and trends that have come out of film experiences. Steele relates how even something as simple as Clark Gable removing his shirt to reveal that he is not wearing an undershirt can affect the trends and fashions of a period of time (336). It is not only exterior and visible trends that are affected by the influences of film, however. The way in which people engage one another can be affected by the way in which individuals decide to emulate characters in order to define their relationships. As an example, Marlon Brando inspired not only fashion, once again concerning the men’s undershirt, but emotional context as well during his work in Streetcar Named Desire. The type of undershirt worn by Brando became known as the wife beater because of the nature of his performance. More importantly though was the way in which his emotions became a part of the way in which men related to women. The raw passions and emotions that were released by Brando created a population of men that wanted to feel that depth, to use their violence as a part of their emotions. Women wanted to have a man who wanted them so much they would scream their name in the street. Seeing this type of explosive relationship released a part of the human elements that were held in check within the cultural framework (Clurman 372). This does not suggest that these types of emotions did not exist within the human experience. Watching the way in which actors express the emotional content of that the writers put into the films and the directors draw out allows for emulation to take place. In looking at the emotions of actors, one can see how emotions are developed in life. O’Conner uses acting as methods of helping those with depression overcome their feelings through showing that the way one behaves is related to the way one feels (39). This theory can also be applied in showing how emulation of how people respond on the screen to others affects the way in which people have begun to relate to one another. What is not being suggested is that these emotions did not exist before films influenced them, but that they were not expressed in the same way and accepted as culturally understood behaviors. According to Gold, the way that emotional expression is learned is through socialization agents. Gold states that behaviors are learned in order to “express positive emotions such as happiness, as well as control negative feelings such as anger or frustration” (82). Gold goes on to say that children learn which emotions to hide and which emotions to express according to how their parents
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