Online Learning of A Doll’s House, Day 11

Goals for the Week:

  1. Write a response to a prompt analyzing A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen.
  2. Continue to collaborate with teachers and classmates.
  3. Finalize all work on A Doll’s House and our Feminism unit and prepare for our next learning experience!

Today’s Checklist:

  1. Read and consider this article from Time about feminism in movies
  2. Understand and explore the Bechdel Test
  3. Find a movie that passes the Bechdel test to watch this week 🙂

Today’s Lesson!

Standard:

  • ELAGSE9-10RL7 Analyze the representation of a subject or a key scene in two different artistic mediums (e.g., Auden’s poem “Musée de Beaux Arts” and Breughel’s painting Landscape with the Fall of Icarus), including what is emphasized or absent in each treatment.

Learning Target: 

I can analyze the representation of women in plays and movies by reading an article and watching movie clips, so that I can understand how female characters have changed over the years.

Activator: 

Check out these two Disney Princess videos. The first is Ariel, singing “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid:

And the second is Elsa, singing “Show Yourself” from Frozen II:

Consider the differences in these two songs. Both are sung by princesses. How is “Show Yourself,” the much more modern song, more empowering for Elsa than “Part of Your World” is for Ariel? What does this say about how Disney Princesses have changed over the past 30 years?

Work Session: 

Your assignment for this week!

This week is your largest assignment to date! Each day we will explore a different topic related to feminism and A Doll’s House. I have made a Google Doc with 5 prompts, one for each day this week. CHOOSE ONE PROMPT and write a paragraph in response to it.

Type your response in this document!

Remember, you only need to respond to ONE prompt this week!

Today’s Topic: Feminism in Movies!

Today we’re talking about feminism and women’s representation in movies! After our opening and considering the evolution of princesses from 1989 to 2019, let’s continue to dig into movies and women.

This article talks specifically about Elsa’s wardrobe in Frozen II – she wears pants! Although Jasmine did wear pants in Aladdin, this is the first time a princess’s outfit has been more about practicality than prettiness. However, the article wonders if Frozen II (and many other current movies) go far enough to advance feminism. Consider your own thoughts – for example, do you appreciate the treatment of women in Avengers: Endgame or did it seem trite and contrived?

The Bechdel test is so simple that you’d think almost every movie would pass it: The movie must (1) contain two named female characters, (2) who have a conversation, (3) about something other than a man. Despite the simplicity, only about 60% of movies pass the test. Take some time to explore the website, look up some of your favorite movies, and see if they pass the test. If they do pass, how well do they pass? One of my favorite movies is Black Panther, and it only kinda barely passes with a 30-second scene that seems shoehorned in.

After you’ve taken some time to explore the movies, choose one and watch it this week 🙂

Closing Session: 

For our closing session today, I want you to go out and find a movie that passes the Bechdel test and sit down to watch it! You don’t have to watch it today if you’re busy, but put it on your calendar for this week. You should be able to find one on whatever streaming service you have access to (might I recommend Captain Marvel on Disney+?). Look for the scene that makes the movie pass the test – is it one small scene, or are there many conversations between women about something other than a man?

Also, if you’re more of a YouTube type person, check out this video series by Innuendo Studios called “Bringing Back What’s Stolen.” This is the introduction video – it’s a whole series of episodes about women in movies, using Mad Max: Fury Road as its basis. Enjoy!

Looking Ahead: Tomorrow’s Checklist

If you want to get ahead on things, here is what we’re going to be doing tomorrow!

  1. Check out this advice from Princeton University on wholesome masculinity
  2. Read this article from Christian Lopez on Medium about What Non-Toxic Masculinity Looks Like
  3. Consider our own opinions on what makes something wholesome-masculine versus toxic-masculine.

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