Gender Theory In The Film Rebel Without A Cause

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The movie Rebel Without a Cause represents both gender theory and queer theory. Gender theory is how you present yourself, how do you move, small behaviors is more of a performance. The production code was in forced and forbade any mention of homosexuality. They were able to insert restrained references to Plato's homosexuality and attraction to Jim, by including the pinup photo of Alan Ladd on Plato's locker door, and Plato's adoring looks at Jim. Rebel Without a Cause is the story of a troubled new kid in town (Jim) caught in an escalating spiral of violence.
Jim wants Frank his father to start acting like a man so that he can respect him as a father. Jim tends to use the technique of binary reasoning to problem solve. As an example, he …show more content…

When men refuse to fight, they are pegged as ‘not real men,’ ‘woman-like’ or ‘gay. (Module 3) At first it appears that the hoodlum Buzz is merely jealous of Jim’s attempt to befriend his girl Judy, but as the film progresses it appears that Jim bugs Buzz on other levels and the boys’ rivalry becomes increasingly homoerotic. Jim draws attention to this during a fight when he reminds Buzz that only “punks use knives”, “punk” being a code word for gay men. The switchblade knife sticks up in the middle of the frame like an erect phallic symbol. The possibility that the cause of Jim’s chaotic behavior is a fear of queerness is also raised by his disgust at his father’s emasculation in the family home. We see his father wearing a woman’s apron and being dominated by his mother and grandmother. Jim begs his father to beat his mother to bring her into line. In a misogynistic culture, the only solution to sexual ambiguity is violence against the female, but what Jim really seems to want is for his father to beat the threat of femininity, which his mother has come to represent out of the family. Jim fears that unless his father becomes a real man, he will be tainted by this emasculation and unable to become a real man himself. Like the film Full Metal Jacket the gun becomes a “phallic symbol,” or a representation of the power associated with the possession of a penis. (Module 3) It is

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