Gender Roles In The Birth Of A Nation

1748 Words7 Pages

Samantha Solberg
Dr. Wright
ENGL 350
29 September 2017
Short Essay: The Treatment of Gender in The Birth of a Nation Compared to the debate of the world’s creation, gender equality is a topic from the past that was recently questioned, has been addressed, and still appears as an issue today. The 19th Amendment that gave the right for women to vote, did not become a part of America’s constitution until 1920. In The Birth of a Nation, which was debuted in 1915, men and women played different roles in society than today’s men and women. White men held increasingly more dominance over white women, and whites held more dominance over blacks. D.W. Griffith and Laura Mulvey both contribute to illustrating the reality of the treatment of gender during this time of history. D.W. Griffith, a Kentucky …show more content…

Griffith treats this as where he thinks white women should be in society. They are here to help the men of the household and tend to the house until she is to be given away to a husband where she will do the same thing for him. At the end of the movie, there is a scene where the Elsie is proposed to by Lynch, a black man training under her father. She refuses and Lynch becomes angered. Griffith uses parallel editing to make the audience feel like he would have forced a marriage on her if the KKK had not come to the rescue (02:47:12). This scene is one of two examples of Griffith’s opposition to interracial marriage. Griffith believed that whites should not marry blacks. He treats this issue with dramatic scenes of forceful marriage that do not work out. He also shows women as weak and in need of rescuing by

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