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Capstone Project: Hollywood's Relationship with Race and Racism

Updated: 2 days ago

For my master "thesis" I am writing academic blog posts on well, read below to find out.

Technology has made television accessible, birthing a new era of television: streaming. Now, societal norms are communicating on screen, and anyone with access to the internet becomes a recipient of these notions, building a personal relationship with television and films and the stereotypes they produce.

Personally, I first sparked my passion for television and film in middle school, and it is the same ember that encourages me today. At the start of this relationship, I used this media as a form of escapism. Going to a white, rich private school as a middle-class biracial student, I experienced years of racial bullying. 

Faith's Takes author, in front of her middle school, at 14 in school uniform

To hide from the harsh realities of our world, my friends became TV characters; I cried when characters died, cheered when these friends succeeded, and was hurt when other characters of color experienced racial aggressions. While I was able to escape from my personal reality, I quickly realized that television is not an escape from our society but rather a mirror reflecting harsh truths in our society. My truth has sparked my capstone project analyzing bigotry in film and television. Specifically, how Hollywood’s relationship with race reflects, dramatizes, and perpetuates racial stereotypes within television and films. 

On and off screen, the entertainment industry is infamously known for prominently featuring white men and occasionally women, systematically excluding people and women of color. Without women and men of color at the helm of their own stories, hegemonic genders and races control the narrative. In addition to the few people of color creating this media, this content is often created for mainstream audiences, also known as white audiences. 

This capstone research/blog project will examine how corporate and commercialized series and motion pictures represent racial minority groups. By analyzing different mediums and races, I can better conceptualize how Hollywood interacts with race and racism and better contextualize the stereotypes they permit and instill. 

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