The Help and Shameless

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Media Viewing Paper Throughout the course of the semester, I have learned a tremendous amount from SOC 209 Race Class Ethnicity. After growing up in a predominantly white town, having only a handful of African American classmates, I was generally unaware of the issues that existed. This course taught me the meanings of words I have often heard but never fully understood. I learned that there was a difference between prejudice and discrimination, which I often wrongly used interchangeably. Prejudice is simply a thought, while discrimination is an action, generally from someone of substantial power to enforce the discrimination. I also learned the term matrix of domination, which explains that each person experiences oppression of many fronts whether it be through race, glass or gender. This took me by surprise because after growing up in a predominantly white community, I seldom faced such obstacles. For the media viewing paper I decided to watch a movie and a television series. I chose the movie The Help, which was directed and written by Tate Taylor, and adapted from Kathryn Stockett's 2009 novel. I also chose the Showtime television series Shameless, created by Paul Abbot and developed by John Wells. The Help is about an aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s in Jackson, Mississippi, who decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, as well as the hardships they go through on a daily basis. This movie showed the many differences in the ways in which black and white people were treated during this time period. Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan is the white journalist who returned to the family plantation after graduating from the Univers... ... middle of paper ... ...inforce notions of the middle class being the standard class because the main characters are lower-class citizens. For the media viewing paper I decided to focus on two separate obstacles. From watching and analyzing the movie The Help, I focused more on the racial differences that existed between blacks and whites. Although it was more prominent in the 1960s in which the movie took place, many differences still exist between the two races. The Showtime series Shameless, focussed more on homosexuality and how the lower-class lives in the current time period in which we live. I enjoyed writing this paper because I felt as though connecting the many concepts we discussed in class to a movie and TV series made learning more enjoyable. Works Cited Taylor, T. (Director). (2011). The Help : Dreamworks ;. Wells, J. (2011). Shameless [Television series].
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