Defined: Hollywood’s Generally Stigmatizing Views of Miscegenation

Hollywood has had a plethora of leisure and wonder, nevertheless it’s typically combined with harmful clichés, stereotypes, and questionable portrayals of sure individuals. Interracial love and procreation has been included on this since Hollywood’s early days, and what appears to be a subject of derision and mock in a number of movies is the apply of miscegenation, which has typically been seen as a taboo side for the movie trade.

Whether or not it’s an interracial couple who receives opposition from naysayers, or somebody being the product of interbreeding, this topic appears to at all times spawn some emotions of discomfort in characters who should not individuals of coloration, making its topics ashamed and generally insecure of their scenario.


Miscegenation (“our final taboo“), for these unaware, is the apply of various ‘races’ breeding, which was typically seemed down upon earlier than, throughout, and even after the Civil Rights motion. Legal guidelines have been put in place to maintain the races separate, which left a systemic conditioning to maintain marriage homogenous. This conditioning appears to have left a everlasting emotional scar within the movie trade. So how has Hollywood seen the customs of interbreeding, and why have they but to actually normalize it?

Historical past dictates Hollywood

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner
Columbia Photos

Understanding that historical past is nearly at all times going to be the defining issue within the interpretations of Hollywood movement picture-making will enable individuals to raised perceive the shady historical past and views of social points on-screen. When there was a notable struggle, Hollywood talked about it. When there was a game-changing occasion in human historical past, 9 possibilities out of ten, Hollywood was there to make a movie about it, with their very own tweaks and twists.

Nevertheless, when filmmaking giants have tackled the subject of miscegenation, a tone of intolerance typically strikes the hearts of the characters within the movies and (generally) even the viewers watching. Essentially the most notable movies discussing miscegenation (Pinky, Loving, Imitation of Life, and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner) typically have their characters both take part within the exercise, thus being ridiculed for it, or have characters in opposition to the exercise, which regularly results in the connection being strained and examined for the rest of the movie.

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Given that almost all of those motion pictures have been made throughout a time of racial insensitivity, audiences discovered the relationships between the opposite-raced characters unorthodox and seemed upon it with unbelievable skepticism and irregularity. Interracial marriage was a taboo speaking level and was shortly restricted in the USA as a result of segregationist legal guidelines of Jim Crow America.

Within the 1967 movie Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Sidney Poitier‘s character falls in love with a younger white girl and, because of this, each events’ households protest the notion of marriage as they fear concerning the bother that can probably conspire towards the couple. The stigma of interracial relations prompted the disparagement of their engagement and. as a substitute of getting it normalized, the characters look it at as one thing both very terrible or very lovely, when it ought to in all probability simply be checked out as not a giant deal. Normalization would not contain glorifying one thing, it includes making it simply as acceptable and boringly regular as all the things else on the earth, and the loverbirds of Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner show this excellently in stark distinction to the characters surrounding them.

The kid turns into an ashamed outcast

Imitation of Life
Common Photos

Along with the historical past of miscegenation, the kid who comes out of the act, significantly in motion pictures, feels ashamed of themselves and begins to have an id disaster. Within the 1959 movie Imitation of Life, a woman named Sarah Jane is raised by her Black mom, however as a consequence of her mild pores and skin and Caucasian options, she spends a lot of the movie passing as white, feeling ashamed of her heritage to raised slot in with the white neighborhood.

Sarah Jane’s disgrace is what fueled her try to assimilate right into a white society. This sense of belonging in a better class is what she craves, however society rejects her at nearly each flip. Sarah Jane’s boyfriend beats her up when discovering out her mom is Black, she is fired from her job over her race, and is haunted by her personal self-disgust.

The film portrays her in a manner the place she is ashamed of her Blackness and never happy with it. Whereas Douglas Sirk’s lovely movie condemns these views on the floor, it tacitly repeats the narrative that African-People are inferior to the white race. A greater instance is the movie Loving, concerning the real-life interracial couple Richard and Mildred Loving, who get married and have youngsters towards the legal guidelines imposed by the state of Virginia. On account of them making an attempt to abolish the anti-miscegenation legal guidelines, the courts have deemed their youngsters as “bastards” and discover them as outcasts. The film does an incredible job of normalizing the couple as easy individuals who need to get married, but additionally tackles prejudice with authenticity.

The youngsters additionally endure from the abuse and stigma from the poisonous mindset that may be seen in some Hollywood movies; Historical past has pushed this inferiority on African-People and combined individuals of coloration, and Hollywood simply displays it.

Past conventional miscegenation

Common Photos

Whereas many individuals consider miscegenation as ‘Black and white,’ the movie trade places miscegenation in a nasty mild exterior of race and even into the fantasy world. In 2017’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) is ridiculed and insulted by those that say that he is of “an unorthodox family tree” and is a “reckless hybrid.” Quill’s mom was from Earth earlier than she died and his father, Ego (Kurt Russell), is a celestial. The 2 characters introduced Quill into the world, and he was a topic of ridicule.

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Within the 1995 animated movie Balto, the titular character is a wolf-dog hybrid who is continually bullied primarily for that objective alone, and even within the Harry Potter sequence, there are wizard classes for pure-bloods, half-bloods, and mud-bloods to categorise wizards dependent upon who their mother and father have been.

To Hollywood, miscegenation has prolonged past race and has change into a norm for a personality to beat, as if it is a detriment to them. The issue arises when, even nowadays, miscegenation continues to be checked out as unorthodox, and one thing that has but to be absolutely normalized, as a result of true progress comes from letting outdated habits die.

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