Thursday, January 23, 2014

Revised Marx and Melodrama

Melodrama is an acquired taste. It was, and still is, not meant for everybody. Ben Singer points this out in “Melodrama and the Consequences of Capitalism” when he mentions that the genre of film is meant for “proletarian amusement.” They want to witness someone who is going through a similar struggle overcome his or her challenging obstacles. They want him or her to vanquish evil and save the day. Those who are wealthy have no desire to watch a victimized nobody prevail after constantly being put down, for they cannot relate to the struggles that this character faces.

            Marx reaches out to the proletariats around the world in his manifesto. He claims that the bourgeois have gained too much power, yet have also created their own gravediggers. Though they completely control all working-class people, who can be disposed at any moment, they have also fueled these people with a desire for a better life. A life where everyone is equal and there is no such thing as private property, or greed. Marx’s manifesto is an attempt to inspire the proletariats to be the hero of a melodrama. He wants private property, his version of the evil authority, to be rid from the world, and a new, good system of government to be established. A government that would eliminate greed from society and put workers with nothing at equal status as the dreaded bourgeois. 
            The problem with Marx's manifesto, and melodramatic films in generally, is that it can only provide hope. A melodramatic film can make a viewer feel happy for the triumphant victimized hero after leaving the theatre, but that does not mean the person is going to walk in to work the next day and stand up to his or her boss. Likewise, Marx's words can inspire an individual to take a stand against his unfair living standards, but history has shown that it took more than just the words of the manifesto for Communism to spread throughout the world. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are restricted to course members only.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.