In the film Coffy, we met our main character as a junkie prostitute but then realize she is a nurse and is using that persona to pursue the dealers who got her baby sister hooked on drugs. We talked about Coffy being the good girl and the bad girl. How do these opposing persona’s play out in the film? We also talked about Coffy is more than one sterotype, please discuss and explain why? How does it relate to the good girl vs bad girl persona. Also, give examples of where this stereotype exist in current films/tv shows. How do the men view/treat her in the film, give exmaples. In preparing your comments, think about some of the things we talked about in class as well as the non-verbal sexual behaviors overview I sent you. As always, please refer to the readings from previous classes and scenes from the film.
In both versions of She’s Gotta Have it, Nola Darling is presented as a sexually liberated, progressive and free-spirited single black women navigating her life in Brooklyn. In theory, she is the anti – stereotype of a black female lead. She’s not a baby mamma, a mammy, sapphire or an overt jezebel. So, what’s the problem? Many have written about Nola, what is your take?
After watching both the original film produced in 1986 and episode one of the new Netflix series that premiered in the Fall of 2017, some 30 years apart. Has Nola changed, stayed the same or gotten worse? And how does she compare to the current images of black women in film and television? Lastly, in the era of reboots, was it necessary for the reincarnation of SGHI and how should a show successful recreate a reboot?
In writing your response, please incorporate the questions in bold, as well as the readings and any articles that help build your argument. Use quotes from the readings and articles and note the source of the quote. Hint – write in a word document and review before posting.
Here are two articles on the new Netflix series;
And one on the original film:
From Chapter 3 – Black Women as Cinematic “Other”
In the history of filmmaking, never has there been a period when the black female subject has enjoyed a prolonged spate of positive portrayals on screen. From the onset, black women’s cinematic representation has been an ambiguous one.
Waiting to Exhale
Taken from McMillan’s blockbuster novel, Waiting to Exhale tells the story of four women, each dealing with man troubles. Savannah Jackson (Whitney Houston), a TV producer who is having an affair with a married man; Bernadine Harris (Angela Bassett), a mother dealing with a messy divorce from a man who’s leaving her for a white woman; Robin Stokes (Lela Rochon) a young executive who is struggling with an aimless relationship; and Gloria Matthews (Loretta Devine), a single mother who pines for her ex-husband who has come out as gay. The women forge a friendship that carries them through their troubles.
There is a lot to admire about this story of four attractive and accomplished women. Their friendship and their celebration of black womanhood and sisterhood as well as their portrayal of professional women in contemporary film. As noted in the L.A. Times article,”Waiting to Exhale’ breathed life into films with ethnic casts and a woman’s point of view 20 years ago.” But, as we discussed in class, this film still subscribes to many of the traditional stereotypes that have plaqued black women throughout the history of film. 20 Years Later, what does ‘Waiting to Exhale’ mean to Millennial women?
Please incorporate the readings, any additional resources like articles and our class discussions. Make sure you review your response before posting, for grammar and spelling errors.
For Extra Credit:
Pick 2-3 three articles that address Colorism and the Beauty Model and discuss as it related to either the short film Yellow Fewer, a tv show or film that favors or refers colorism. As always incorporate the readings, our discussions and refer to the content in this blog posts in your comments. Also see, the short film Yellow Fever which we viewed in class
Please connect the assigned reading on Black women as the “Other” and the “Social Deviant” to She’s Got To Have It. We talked briefly about the concept of the “symbolic whore” and the “good girl vs the bad girl”. How does that relate to his female protagonist, Nola Darling? Please review the article below on She’s Got To Have It and incorporate scenes from the film in your comments/arguments.