ENGL 2P13 Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Peer Pressure
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Rosewoof 1997 pt 2
The Good Gun:
Duke Purdy – Takes the notion of “The Good Gun” very strongly – he encourages killing
because he thinks it’s for a good cause. He tells his son to kill, and he teaches him this
because he believes that it’s what’s good for him, so he can survive in the world.
This ideology is strongly embedded in their community. It is what is driving the entire
mob because they believe that the Black Community is to blame and so murdering them
Interesting Scene - A mother tells her son to watch as the men are being hung because
this is important “You’ve got to remember this”
The Society as a False Utopia
The Film opens with showing the scenery and the townspeople living in Harmony.
Black and White members of the community live beside each other without conflict.
Though they seem to be living in Harmony, the Black Community is still considered to be
oAunt Sarah is a maid to a white woman and is expected to remain quiet and
oWhen a Black person is speaking to a white one, The Black man puts his head
down and does not look straight at him.
oSylvester is criticized by his family for standing up for Scrappie because they
know they need to keep out of trouble and by confronting the white men he is
oThe Black Community is constantly being referred to as “N****rs”, even by
oDuke Purdy tells his son to not play with his Black Friend.
Fanny tells the Sheriff she was not raped, but just beaten up yet later in the movie, some
members of the mob say she was raped numerous times. This suggests that they were
never living in Harmony since they were able to make up stories about the Black
Community and use them as excuses to fight them.
Everyone is aware that Fanny is cheating on her husband, yet they quickly believe what
she says and uses it as an excuse to attack the Black Community.
The outbreak of violence suggests that the harmony they were living in was entirely
superficial since it took one woman’s accusations to start this entire massacre.
Significance of Setting
The movie opens with showing the scenery and the way both of the towns are set up. It is
interesting to see how the movie also ends with showing the scenery to show what was,
and how it became.
Interesting: The housing in Samner is similar to those houses that slaves lived in while
working on Plantations. Thoughts?
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