Body Types, Stereotypes, and Typecasting

August 28, 2016

 

The panel, "Body Types, Stereotypes, and Typecasting" focuses on the inherent biases theatre and film have created over a century of selective casting. From the way works are written to how media portrays beauty and goodness, we have all been influenced by what we see and how we feel when we see certain types of people. Systemic racism, sexism, ableism, and the need to classify "others" has influenced the stories we tell and the stories we see.

 

In 2016, film, tv, and theatre have been both praised and reprimanded for diversity. It is our responsibility as storytellers to tell the truth, even the painful ones. But to do that, we must be honest with ourselves and each other. Why can't we believe a fat body is worthy of sexual desire without it being laughed at or diminished? Why can't we believe that a black body is the pinnacle of goodness and purity, without having to place a white body beside it as its ally or foil. Why can't a differently abled body be the superhero, without it being praised for the bravery of just existing in an able bodied world. Or a non-binary body be the leader of a community without the constant question of "he or she"? Should we be color blind or color conscious? How can we be truly inclusive without diminishing the inherent struggle of the marginalized? These are massive questions with no simple answers. But if we open ourselves up from within, we will do ourselves and our community and our audiences a great service. Great steps have been taken, but greater steps have yet to be made.

 

Don't miss this interesting discussion Sept 3 from 7:00-9:00 at Peace College in the Flowe Building room 110 (corner of Peace and Blount).

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