The ‘Chinaman’ in the basement: Visual den narratives of the late-nineteenth century

Historically, art and literature have served a fundamental role in mirroring (and perhaps creating) a society’s cultural climate; they have become the means through which a society comes to ‘know’ itself. By artistically or literally depicting categories of people, or ‘social types’, one is easily able to comprehend society at large. Yet the socio-cultural worldview […]

American Film from the 1950s: Blessing or Curse?

Film from the 1950s to present, as will be explored in this essay, is an extremely useful medium, often underestimated within the label of “entertainment”; unfortunately, it may be partially responsible for current socio-cultural problems, too. The critical question, then, is whether film has fostered the progress of a more open-minded America, or rather hindered its development through the perpetuation of antiquated concepts of stereotypes, densensitized violence and breeding of normalcy.