How is cultural identity either embraced or rejected by the characters in Ivan Sen's film Beneath Clouds?

Topics: Nazi Germany, Stereotype, Jews Pages: 3 (882 words) Published: April 24, 2014

How is cultural identity either embraced or rejected by the characters in Ivan Sen's film Beneath Clouds?  Analyse how this is reflected in the journey of Lena and Vaughn. 

Cultural identity is the identity of a group, culture, or individual in so much as one is influenced by themselves belonging to a group or culture. Cultural identity is rejected by the characters in Iven Sen’s film Beneath Clouds and Art Spieglman’s Maus. In Beneath Clouds this is demonstrated and reflected in the journey of Lena and Vaughn. Lena, Vaugh and Art experience journeys in search of cultural identity but their search is indeed a search for identity and belonging which is often rejected by the characters themselves. This essay will discuss…

Sen embraces typical stereotypes of cultural identity in Vaughn and Lena but juxtaposes that with the majority of the other characters in the film. These minor characters judge Lena and Vaughn due to their race and class. During their journey, Lena and Vaughn come across people who reject their cultural identity. This is evident in the corn scene when the property owner specifically tells Vaughn, labelled as a “black bastard”, to get off his land when Lena was equally responsible, however but due to her colour which reflects her half-cast identity, she was not held accountable. This is also seen in the tree-cutting scene when the policeman is hostile towards Vaughn and sides with the white boy in their dispute. Displaying the rejection of cultural identity by taking his race into account without judging his actions independently. Lena’s cultural identity is rejected in the opening scene of Beneath Clouds where the road represents a barrier between her and the rest of the community. This is further represented in the close up of the dead butterfly which is being infested with ants, resembling a loss of beauty and freedom due to society classing her by race and rejecting her cultural identity. This is resembled in the ants...
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