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Title: We are one, other and the same : the need for alter egos in the perfection-obsessed world of Mildred Pierce and Black Swan.
Authors: Shereen Naaz Charles Syariff.
Keywords: DRNTU::Social sciences::Mass media::Broadcasting::Motion pictures and films
Issue Date: 2011
Abstract: Over the years, women have been subjected to a myriad of expectations. Women were not allowed to act as they wanted to or be whoever they wanted to be. Instead, they had to conform, mostly, to a patriarchal society’s expectations of them. In a bid to be who they wanted to be, my paper examines the idea of the alter ego or the ‘Other’. The alter ego presents women with an opportunity to be someone ‘Other’ than who they are, without having to conform to society’s expectations. The woman, my paper will explore, must always be perfect, and if she is not perfect, than she has failed in the eyes of the patriarchal society. The idea of the alter ego will shed some light on my idea of the perfection paradox in Black Swan and the perfect mother in Mildred Pierce , and the struggle of woman to remain real in a world that has unreal expectations of her. By creating an alter ego, the women are allowed to live precariously without care for society’s expectations and give in to their inner desires, without being judged or sidelined by society. Through the portrayal of dual-identity characters such as Nina Sayers and Lily in Black Swan and Mildred Pierce and Veda Pierce Beragon in Mildred Pierce, the directors open opportunities for women to relate to one another, to attempt to change the way society views her and create avenues for society to critique America’s mass culture, stereotypes and patriarchal structure.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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