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Melodrama in Media

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Ajay Harish

on 18 February 2014

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Transcript of Melodrama in Media

Melodrama in the Media

Melodrama "structures the presentation of political discourse and national identity in contemporary America"
Five qualities:
Moral virtue signified through suffering and bolstered by heroic action
Ruthless villain, suffering victim, and heroic savior who acts through retribution
Dramatic polarization of good and evil
Emotion and action create suspense and resolve conflict
Images and other methods illuminate moral legibility
Boston Marathon Bombings
Villains Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev victimized innocent civilians
Suffering and moral legibility portrayed in news all over world
Obama: "those responsible will feel the full weight of justice"
Events shown as reminiscent of well-known past events increase in prominence among the viewer base
Preexisting notions can cause prejudice
How something is presented has begun to take on more meaning than the reality itself
New Jersey v. Dharun Ravi
Villain who breached moral boundaries, victim committed suicide
Preexisting notions about the LGBT community and bullying in general
Made it very easy to polarize good and evil
Personally relevant issues
Shooting of Trayvon Martin
Prexisting notions of race and gun activism
Misleading news coverage
Portrayed George Zimmerman as white
Pictures of both villain and victim were skewed
Ajay Harish
Aurora Theater Shooting
James Eagen Holmes portrayed as the clear villain
Parallels to the Joker
Booby trapped apartment -> suspense
Public wants retribution, but court proceedings are on hold
The Role of Women in Indian Society
Gender roles ingrained in Indian society; male chauvinism
Gang rapes and violence against women in headlines
Personal visits to India
LGBT Rights in India
Homosexuality is still a crime, penalty up to life imprisonment
Lack of family support
Indian Supreme Court upholds this persecution
Full transcript