The Race Problem in 12 Years a Slave, Malcolm X and Selma

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 609 |

Page: 1|

4 min read

Published: May 24, 2022

Words: 609|Page: 1|4 min read

Published: May 24, 2022

Employing personal worlds actually assist writers in creating a swiftly moving plot. In order to give a realistic touch to movie plots, they connect the plotline to reality in possible ways. Examining the treatments of a community in society also facilitates this ‘real’ factor which is why the writers deploy characters who exhibit real-life characteristics. In the movie Within Our Gates, Micheaux had made use of an interracial cast because he did not want to build a world which had no white people in it, he wanted to build a natural and realistic world. This movie has treated being ‘American’ as a matter of self-conception which has been represented by Micheaux through the portrayal of the black masculinity. Black masculinity includes drugs, gambling, conspiring with white men, for selfish needs, passing for white, and criminality. The filmmaker had not idealised the community like most others and in fact called upon different Black people to question their own doings and morals.

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In Malcolm X, the filmmakers have shown the American diversity in location as the plot includes different places like Boston, Omaha, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Detroit etc. The makers have used these places to show the diversity that instils in the nation of America. The identity of blacks have been lower and they have been underrepresented, this very factor also serves as a portrayal of American identity. In Selma, DuVernay has also used the same tactic of showing the American diversity by showcasing different locations like Birmingham, Alabama, Edmund Pettus Bridge, etc. The film has also shown different protests and protesters which also gives away the idea that Americans do not stand injustice, rather they fight back. In 12 Years a Slave, McQueen has made use of the variedness in the North and the south of the nation and the people who dwell there. The filmmaker has made attempts of sketching a realistic picture of the societies in America and how they actually function or react when drugs is at concern. According to the filmmaker, the American identity depends on the relationship that is shared between the history, memory and slavery. He says that Black people consider their own societal role based on how they were treated in the past and comparing it with the present.

According to Dubois, the problem of the twentieth century is the relationship between the darker and the lighter races of men. Racial inequality still exists in various platforms and discrimination based on this has always victimized the Black people. A similar perspective can be seen in the film 12 Years a Slave, evidently the Black identity of Solomon is treated differently from the general American identity. In spite of him being an American himself, their histories make them slightly fall back. Solomon’s story shows that only well-to-do does not provide a lavish lifestyle, being both well-to-do and white does the charm.

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Majority of the assimilation had not conformed with the richness of the black worlds, and these blacks have been forced to adopt a culture which did not even seem to support them but they are more inclined towards the white cultures. These Blacks have become alienated from the attributes of political and social cultural representation because they follow the practice of the whites. They are expected to live in different communities and not to pollute the White communities with their crude habits just how the three brothers Doughboy, Cuba and Ricky (Boyz and the Hood) were living in their own community bounds even when they had the idea that they were surveilled. Moreover, the Black people had not been given the basic rights during the past, and sadly yet this problem has still not been fully solved. 

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The Race Problem in 12 Years a Slave, Malcolm X and Selma. (2022, May 24). GradesFixer. Retrieved February 28, 2024, from
“The Race Problem in 12 Years a Slave, Malcolm X and Selma.” GradesFixer, 24 May 2022,
The Race Problem in 12 Years a Slave, Malcolm X and Selma. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 28 Feb. 2024].
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