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Hollywood Presentation of Women in the 1930s Films - Research Paper Example

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HOLLYWOOD PRESENTATION OF WOMEN IN THE 1930S FILMS Name Name of Institution Introduction Since the inception of the film industry in the late 19th and the early 20th century, women have played a central role in the growth of the industry…
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Hollywood Presentation of Women in the 1930s Films
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Hollywood Presentation of Women in the 1930s Films

However, majority of women are celebrated more because of their appearance rather than their acting ability ("Women in Films”). Despite certain female stars’ popularity necessitating their legendary status, the various roles they played often reinforced their gender roles that were traditional. All in all, women played a greater role in shaping the film industry in the early years. This is because being professionals and consumers in the field, both behind and in front of the camera, women drastically affected the American film development. Thus, the purpose of this research paper is to document how Hollywood production displayed women in the film. Under the topic, the following themes will be discussed. These are such as the representation of women in films in the early 1930s, role of women in films, portrayal of women in films in 1930s and finally, the criticism of women role in films in the 1930s. Representation of Women in Films in the 1930s The Hollywood cinematograph often objectified women for men pleasure. As such, most of the films followed the patriarchal ideology. Hollywood representation of women was viewed as the most transgressive in the years between 1929 and 1933. Whereby, the working women were perceived as “hardboiled” as a result of their expertise in the Depression-era city. In addition to that, they were likely to choose a career and independence over marriage. In the mid 1930’s, the career women wanted both romance and a career. On the contrary, in 1939, the Hollywood women desired love more than a career and those who chose otherwise faced punishment or were derided. The cinema always portrayed the world as men dominated. In that case, the only way for women to deal with the Hollywood patriarchal system was to fight for equality. According to Mulvey (1989, p.56), the female characters in the Hollywood were represented with “to-be-looked at” and not to be heard. As such, men viewed them in two dimensions in this era. For instance, they were viewed as fetishist and whores. In that case, they were categorized into two distinct groups. One of the categories comprised of women who were sexually active, and the other category comprised of females who were powerless often stereotyped as “the housewife.” The above theory has found dominance in the action films spearheaded by Hollywood for quite some time. However, they have been challenged by various films such as “Kill Bill 2” which has helped in providing a role that is more exciting for women. According to Gates (2011, p.23), most Hollywood films present women images with a purpose of gratifying male viewers. However, some people believe that since we live in a society that is patriarchal, men are always satisfied via viewing objects in a way that is sexual. These make women to be passive and men to be active. Portrayal of Women in Films In 1930s Films reinforce and reflect the ideology that is dominant. In addition to that, it reflects how women are represented in the films. Given the fact that almost half of the world population is female, they are often face underrepresentation in films. The most dominant characters are men. In combination with underrepresentation, women in the Hollywood movies were shown in traditional roles that were cast stereotyped. In the 1930s and 1940s, women films were very popular. In these years, majority of the women portrayed their urge to be independence from their families by trying to experience true love and romance (Gates, 2009, ... Read More
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