Discuss the dominant, alternative and absent discourses of femininity in a film of your choice.

Topics: The Godfather, Francis Ford Coppola, The Godfather Part II Pages: 2 (972 words) Published: December 5, 2014
Discuss the dominant, alternative and absent discourses of femininity in a film of your choice. Cinema as a genre has always been a man's world. From the early breakthrough auteur to the most celebrated directors of all time, movies as an industry and as a discourse have long been male orientated. Because of this, McCabe argues that for the female image, cinema has done nothing but "reduced women to a limited range of stereotypes." In other words, in the most dominant discourse of women on screen - how they are portrayed - "Hollywood produced female myths of subjection and sacrifice." In general, these myths can be broken down into three specific areas of discourse: the dominant, the alternative and the absent. The dominant is the standard stereotype, the alternative displays an unusual form of the accepted discourse but is still important in the narrative, and the absent, which creates a discourse from the image of what the viewer already knows about the character, their culture and identity. Rose argues this discourse portrays itself through the work of American male directors, claiming they have "a skewed angle on what women are like and not like. And thus we have a fair share of stereotypes based on over-simplified ideas about womanhood like the domestic goddess, the success and the screw-up," (www.greencine.com). This study attempts to discuss how these stereotypes are addressed throughout Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather Part II. McCarty claims that the gangster movie "has been male-dominated for most of its existence," and is a true example of what McCabe would term as a "patriarchal film." It is for this reason that this study will highlight the film, as it is often referred to as one of the most compelling and true to life films of the genre. It will discuss how the cultural views of the director, along with set stereotypes surrounding femininity and family, affect the portrayal of the women involved within the Corleone family. Rather than...
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