Roles Of A Predominantly White And Male Industry Is Tough For Women Essay examples

Roles Of A Predominantly White And Male Industry Is Tough For Women Essay examples

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Landing wellwritten
roles in a predominantly white and male industry is tough for women. Women of
color face an unparalleled set of obstacles when trying to succeed in the film industry. A lack of accurate
representation, and stale character tropes for women of different cultures are the results of the
systematic whitewashing of mainstream media and is a phenomenon that is all too prevalent in cinema. In
both liveaction
and animated films, women of color are often the punch line for running jokes while their
unique struggles and personalities are reduced to unambiguous archetypes that permeate offensive
The portrayal of Asian women in film is split into several categories, but the two most ubiquitous ones
are the “Dragon Lady” and “Asian Airhead” character tropes. The “Dragon Lady”: overtly sexual,
mysterious, untrustworthy, aggressive, and a master of martial arts as exemplified by General Fang
(Karen Mok) in Around the World in 80 Days, and by ORenn
Ishii (Lucy Liu) in Kill Bill. The Dragon
Lady shares many traits of the Femme Fatale, but is set apart by her culture. She is smart and
independent, a major contrast to the other trope for Asian women, the “Asian Airhead”. This trope is
the Asian equivalent of the Dumb Blonde, and is often a just a sympathetic friend and a running joke. An
example of this trope would be Knives Chau (Ellen Wong) from Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. She’s
generally beautiful, vain, and lacks any kind of intelligence, but she doesn’t need to be smart because
she’s from an affluent immigrant business family (tvtropes). She is a sharp contrast to the nerdy portrayal
of Asian males. She, like the Dragon Lady, is usually specifically Chinese or has a distinctively Chinese
name. Hollywood isn’t tr...

... middle of paper ...

...ibuted to this
Author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has warned that the danger of telling any story from only the
perspective of white males, people start to internalize the belief that their stories are invalid. Hollywood
continues to fund the production of films starring caucasian men, when the majority of the population,
and 36% of moviegoers are in fact people of colour (Amirah Mercer). The trials that women of various
cultures face in the film industry are exclusive to them. If Hollywood would agree to properly advertise
the stories of women of colour that gave accurate representation for these groups, it could bring about
serious global cultural impacts. Though there is much work to be done, women of colour have come far
in the film industry, and hopefully soon, a diverse array of culturally diverse women will be playing at a
theater near you.
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