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Places and forms of power: how did white power manifest itself?

Dissertation : Places and forms of power: how did white power manifest itself?. Recherche parmi 259 000+ dissertations

Par   •  3 Mai 2017  •  Dissertation  •  1 097 Mots (5 Pages)  •  589 Vues

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Places and forms of power

Today I shall talk about the notion places and forms of power, first all power could imply something that has influence, authority; or even Manipulation, domination or a threat. Then again power could be used positively. The aspect we studied in class is Segregation especially in the USA. Indeed, the deep south has been known for being a very racist place in North America, although things have changed during the last decades. We may ask ourselves “How did white power manifest itself?”. I will be able to answer the question thanks to four documents. The first is a photograph taken in Indiana in August 1930. The second document is the posters for the film Mississippi burning by Alan Parker, the third is the film itself and the last document is a song by Abel Meeropol called Strange Fruit.

In class the teacher gave us only the bottom half of a photograph, she made us guess what was going on. On the bottom half, there are people in what seems to be a public place. They are enjoying themselves. They are only white people, so we may think it’s a gathering in the 1960’s during segregation, it might even be a KKK meeting. The teacher then sowed us the top half of the photo. And we were all really shocked, because we can see two black men hanging from a tree, unconscious. This photo was shocking for us because we didn’t think things like this happened, and it made us feel angry because people shouldn’t be killed because of their skin colour. The next document shows what was really going on in deep south during the 1960’s.

Mississippi burning is a film made by Alan Parker, which came out in cinemas in 1988. First of all, I’m going to talk about the posters for the film. There are 2. On the first poster, we can see two blue eyes, I suppose the man is a member of the KKK as he is wearing a white pillow case over his head. The word Mississippi is written in black while the word burning is written in white. Three quarters of the poster is white and one quarter is black. This is to represent segregation and white supremacy. The second poster, shows both main characters of the film. They are in the foreground looking very serious, behind them is a burning cross. This cross represents the KKK and therefore we know what this film is going to be about. The first poster is more mysterious than the second, and to a certain extent more violent.

The film Mississippi burning starts off with long opening credits, which shows the main themes of the film. The first picture we see is a shot of two water fountains in public facilities. Above the fountain to the left, there is a sign reading WHITE whereas to the right the sign is COLORED. An old man walks towards the fountain, has a drink then leaves. A little black boy comes in after him to do the same at his assigned fountain. He looks as though he was waiting for the man to leave before going himself. The next scene is a shot of a house burning down. During the opening credits, we can hear a slow sad song. These two opening shots showcase the main themes of the film, the first being segregation, the separation between black and white. The second theme is the actions of the Ku Klux Klan, because it is known that the KKK burnt down coloured people’s houses and churches. So just from the opening credits we know what the film is going to be about. After the credits, the screen fades

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