A Re-evaluation of the Role of Prejudice in Contemporary Arts Analytical Essay by Paul2002
A Re-evaluation of the Role of Prejudice in Contemporary Arts
An intense study of the role of prejudice in two contemporary 'pop culture' works.
# 26677 | 4,492 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2003 |
Published on May 12, 2003 in English (Analysis) , English (Persuasive Writing) , Film (Analysis, Criticism, Etc.) , Literature (Comparative Literature)
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This essay is a look at the novel "PUSH" by Sapphire and the movie "8mile" and how they both relate to prejudice in the United States. The writer argues that while both works show that prejudice and racism are still a problem for minorities and the underprivileged, they also suggest that these very people, by the strict definition of prejudice, harbor many prejudices of their own and the writer examines the reasons behind that.
From the Paper:"Prejudice is an oft-discussed topic these days is one which regardless of how overplayed and overanalyzed it may seem to be is still a major factor in many of the problems which we deal with as a society. In both Sapphire's emotionally charged novel PUSH and the popular movie 8 Mile, loosely based on the life of Eminem, the problem of prejudice based on race is examined thoroughly. PUSH especially shows race to be one of the most important factors in the many problems that surround its main character, Claireece Precious Jones. Yet there are many other forms of prejudice besides racism. Defining prejudice is no easy task, but Merriam-Webster's Dictionary gives an interesting--if not completely comprehensive--definition of prejudice: "(1) : preconceived judgment or opinion (2) : an adverse opinion or leaning formed without just grounds or before sufficient knowledge b : an instance of such judgment or opinion c : an irrational attitude of hostility directed against an individual, a group, a race, or their supposed characteristics." (Mirriam-Webster) Therefore one can literally be prejudiced against anyone or anything if one holds an "irrational attitude" toward them. There are many examples of this, interestingly, in the form of Claireece in PUSH. Although Precious is a victim throughout the novel of prejudice, racial discrimination, taunting and ridicule, she still harbors many prejudices towards other groups of people bringing to the fore the quagmire of why an "oppressed" person would not feel compassion for other people in a similar situation--an interesting idea that is also examined in 8 Mile--and why sometimes racism is even more common in people who suffer the brunt of its effects; through her many trials and tribulations Claireece does eventually get past many of her prejudices as she seeks to become more learned and is exposed to other groups of people, though. Yet at the end of PUSH Claireece still seems to harbor many prejudices leaving the reader to ponder the significance of what appears to be her enduring lack of understanding of what it means to be prejudiced."
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