This module interrogates major issues and debates in the cultural politics of identity, as they are represented, articulated and negotiated across intersecting axes of identity in Hollywood cinema from the millennium to the present. It will look at a symptomatic selection of culturally resonant flashpoint films, which represent characters and subject matter across different intersections of a range of identity paradigms, including femininity, masculinity, race, ethnicity, class, age and sexuality. We will consider the contemporary impact of films as well as the ways that cultural commentators and scholars have engaged with them. The module will therefore engage with key concepts, such as intersectionality, postfeminism, racial discourse, multiculturalism, multiraciality, mixed race identities, neo-mistrelsy, the post-racial, Orientalism, whiteness, homosociality, and others. It will also address major external contextual factors such as 9/11, the global financial crisis and the Great Recession, and the election of Barack Obama, with a view to interrogating how such events inform shifts over time in the nature of the representation of cultural identity in contemporary Hollywood.
4000 word essay