Movie Assignment Guidelines
In an essay of no less than 750 words, choose ONE of the following movies, most of which are available through HCC’s libraries (or you can usewww.wheretowatch.com to find where to stream them online) to watch. You do not need to, nor are you expected to, answer all of the questions below; rather, they are meant to be a starting point to help you organize your thoughts into a well-written essay. Focusing on one or two questions is perfectly acceptable. Be sure not to give a movie review—you are watching these films to gain a greater historical understanding of different eras. Be sure to use specific instances from the movie to help your argument. Do not use outside sources; instead, papers should be written based on your understanding of the film you choose. The essay will be due on the date noted next to the movie. This assignment will be worth 100 points towards your final grade.Movie 4: 12 Years A Slave</pclass="msonormal">
1) Why was it so easy for Northup- a free man from New York- to be sold into slavery? What does this show about racial attitudes in America during this time?
2) On the boat, Northup gets the following advice “If you want to survive, do and say as little as possible. Tell no one who you really are, and tell no one that you can read and write unless you want to be a dead n*gger.” At the time, Northup responds, “I don’t want to survive, I want to live.” Do this attitude continue throughout the film, or does Northup enter into survival mode?
3) When looking at Northup’s journey, describe some of the specific ways that we can see slavery as being a dehumanizing institution? In what specific ways is he impacted? Do you think these dehumanizing elements impact white slave-owners as well?
4) Compare and contrast Northup’s experiences with his masters throughout the film. What do these show audiences about the varying experiences of slavery throughout the south?</pclass="msonormal">
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