Hooks Cultural Criticism and Transformation

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Hook teaches us that there is a direct link between the media we are expose too and the real lives we live. She teaches us that it is important to think critically of things that we allow into our lives, and especially to think critically of those things that we do not necessarily allow but that we are bombarded with everyday. The movies we watch are not just some fantasy world, they are based off of reality as we know it. Although, as Hook's makes clear, watching a rape scene in movie may not make a woman think it is ok to be raped, it may perhaps expose her to the idea that her body is to be dominated by a man and that it is somewhat acceptable; acceptable enough to be shown to billion's of people all over the world.
Hook's uses the strategies of looking at who is behind the film/popular media, why certain roles are filled by certain people, and looking at the film as though it does in a way represent real life.
I think what Hook's means by "enlightened witnesses" is that we should view representations of marginalized communities with a knowledge that that representation is a stereotype, or is the representation based on whoever created that character, or who directed that movie; to think critically of the context in which this character is created and exactly who the person behind the character is.

It is easy to zone out when viewing a film and just absorb all that the movie is without thinking twice as to what is beneath the surface of the film. The more you are exposed to an idea, and that that idea is ok, then the more likely you are to accept that idea as being ok. It is just like a classroom; the instructor can lecture to you as to what is right and what is wrong, but if you do not take the time to engage with class discussions and to think critically and acknowledge that maybe you shouldn't just believe everything anyone tells you, then you are just a blind follower. I think that really delving beneath the surface of things is a great way to become self actualized. I find Hook's methods of relating critical theory to popular culture is brilliant because honestly, I learn better and am more engaged when things are relatable to my life outside of academia.

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I like that you talked about how easy it is for us as viewers to zone out while watching films--after all, they are made to entertain us and we love nothing more than to sit back and let that happen. This is something I think we will all have to make a conscious effort to avoid, especially watching films that are funny, that we've seen before, etc. By being critical viewers, the students in this class will hopefully avoid being lulled into the happy, complacent, incomplete role of "moviegoer."

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This page contains a single entry by Fia R. published on January 22, 2012 11:11 PM.

Cultural Criticism and Transformation was the previous entry in this blog.

Being critical viewers is the next entry in this blog.

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