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AQA Media Studies MEST3 Identities and the Media Sec B Exemplar

Rob Miller | Friday August 28, 2015

Categories: A Level, AQA A Level, AQA A2, Admin, Staffroom, Exemplar Materials

Section B (46/48)

“We are defined by the Media we use.” How does your case study suggest that audiences use the media to construct their own identity?

Identity is the way we see ourselves and in turn the way different groups in society see us. I will be using the representation of the male hero in film as a case study platform to develop a response to this question while also exploring notions of audience active and passive consumption of media, important in understanding how Hollywood male action heroes are consumed as a media representation. Key texts that I will be exploring reflect the changing nature of cultural identity in how we construct our own identity in relation to ‘the other’ but also linking with patriarchal ideology. Hollywood films reflect mainstream culture and as such are more likely to evidence hegemonic cultural stereotypes, perhaps within a framework of evolving liberal pluralism. The key texts I will be exploring are Locke and The Double both from 2013 but within a wider framework of film culture.

Spectatorship is important for both films. We have contrasting characters in the aspirational but fundamentally broken Ivan Locke whose dominant brand of masculinity unravels as the film’s narrative progresses while Simon in The Double seems weak and passive allowing for him to be dominated by his doppelganger, James. While Ivan on the surface conforms to John Berger’s historical but relevant theory ‘men act, women appear’ his masculinity can be analysed using David Buckingham’s theory of identity fragmentation as this stereotype falls apart during his journey. Locke is a film about masculinity. Simon does not conform to any stereotypical collective identity and can be studied as a pluralistic representation while James conforms much more to a familiar cultural identity of a professionally successful witty man who is also successful with women. Audiences would see Ivan as an aspirational role...


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