When Appropriation Becomes a Tool of Colonization and Forced Assimilation

Title

When Appropriation Becomes a Tool of Colonization and Forced Assimilation

College

Arts & Letters

Program

M.A. Humanities

Publication Date

3-28-2019

Abstract

For a culture, subculture, or ethnic group to survive they naturally need to maintain their cultural identity and power. These groups run the risk of losing their power and identity once they become a noticeable population. The reason this happens is that once the hetero-patriarchal power groups notice these minority groups they become the newest target of colonization. Once a group loses its power its members are forced to assimilate to their oppressor and become “a cultural cog in the machine.” The term which I am going to apply towards this power base struggle and fight is Gramsci’s term of cultural hegemony. You have various methods in which you see the hegemonic process happen. The most damaging and contemporary measure in which you see this happen is through means of appropriation. A modern method in which you see this happen is through media. Using Saussure’s idea of language and Helene Shugart's definition of appropriation as part of the methodological framework in how media recodes and re-writes various cultures and identities. This presentation will explore how children’s movies are used as methods of appropriation and diminish a culture's power and identity. Once a culture and sub-culture are appropriated, you cannot undue the appropriation.

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When Appropriation Becomes a Tool of Colonization and Forced Assimilation


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