Media Theory Revision Guide
All A level theorists covered alongside revision summaries and exam practise exercises.
Beyonce might provide us with a number of moments that reflect a white power affirming jezebel stereotype, yet the context of further imagery suggests that those representations are deliberately ironic.
Formation, for instance, knowingly references the #blacklivesmatter movement through the ‘stop shooting us' graffiti reference towards the end of the video. The text draws attention to the economic disparities and institutionalised racism of America, yet also provides a stream of tilt-up imagery lit with high-key lighting that celebrates a diverse range of black female, black queer and black male identities. New Orleans isn't just mourned, it's diversity is celebrated.
The text, in this sense, provokes an intersectionalist message - simultaneously critiquing the legacy of black slavery, whilst also celebrating those black identities that mainstream American culture marginalises. In so doing Formation asks an active audience to question the overly sexualised imagery presented at the start of the video and to affirm bell hooks' intersectional political intentions by 'calling out' the effects of white-male privilege.
A black female stereotype that constructs a highly sexualised representation of black femininity. Jezebel characters are usually sexually aggressive or predatory.
Media terminology used
Institutionalised racism occurs when racist ideas or actions are embedded so deeply within an organisation that they are invisible.
A branch of feminism that links the oppression of women and racial prejudice. Intersectionalists argue that women & people of colour are collectively oppressed by white male privilege.