Masculine Domination and Gender in Bourdieusian Sociology: The Case of Roma Movie

Masculine Domination and Gender in Bourdieusian Sociology: The Case of Roma Movie

Birol Demircan (Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli Üniversitesy, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1774-1.ch014

Abstract

In the study, Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón's movie Roma was examined. The movie takes place in Mexico in the 1970s, at a time when the society demanded change. Instead of questioning the traumatic background of being abandoned by the father, the director focused on the maid of the house and a disaster that happened to her. Alfonso Cuarón, who shot the film in black and white, created it as the director, producer, editor, screenwriter, and cinematographer of the movie. The movie, which is about women's loneliness and gender, will be evaluated based on Pierre Bourdieu's statements on masculine domination.
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Introduction

In the study, Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón's movie Roma was examined. The movie takes place in Mexico in the 1970s, at a time when the society demands change. Instead of questioning the traumatic background of being abandoned by the father, the director focused on the maid of the house and a disaster that happened to her. Alfonso Cuarón, who shot the film in black and white, created it as the director, producer, editor, screenwriter and cinematographer of the movie. The movie, which is about women's loneliness and gender, will be evaluated based on Pierre Bourdieu's statements on masculine domination.

The long-standing distinction between sex and gender has an undeniable importance in determining gender equality and rights. Initially, while the concept has been the subject of study specific to female body, the male body, which has started to be represented in popular culture since the late 1990s, has also become a subject. The literature in the field started to take shape with the concept of “body” being considered as a socio-political analysis tool, and Pierre Bourdieu's work called Masculine Domination, which had been a matter of discussion with its conceptual framework and assertion, became one of the most important works in this field. In the discussions made in this context, Maggie Humm assumes that gender is a social structure that suppresses women rather than men, patriarchy shapes this structure, and the knowledge of women's experience helps us to imagine the non-sexist society of the future (Humm, 1977: 5). It is worth mentioning these three main assumptions that Humm mentions and which feminist theory accepts in the context of gender debates on the basis of the mentioned movie. From this point of view, the evaluation is limited with a critical perspective on how the gender structure is established in order to create a perspective for the film, and how women's experience is created in the domination relations at different levels. In particular, based on Bourdieu's sociology of masculine domination, it focuses on women's representation in the movie. How women are represented is a political problem. In order to discuss and analyze this problem, first of all, it is necessary to discuss the movie Roma and give information about the film.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Masculine Domination: The paradigmatic form of a mode of domination that is based primarily on the application of symbolic violence.

Patriarchy: A type of social organization based on male authority.

Roma: A 2018 Mexican film about the problems of two women in different classes.

Sociology of Bourdieu: One of the leading sociologists of the 20th century, Pierre Bourdieu is the author of a general theory of social world. Bourdieu discussed the relationship between the social origins of individuals and their preferences and practices, as well as the reproduction and domination mechanisms of social hierarchies.

Symbolic Power: Bourdieu defined the concept of symbolic power as the power to establish, reproduce and Construct reality.

Symbolic Violence: It is a form of force engraved directly into the body, as if it were grown, without any apparent physical strain.

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