S3 E14 "Gone with the wind" — how a classic American film denies the horrors of slavery


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The Hollywood classic "Gone With The Wind" has recently been removed from HBO Max, and returned to its cinematic library a mere two weeks later with additional content: an optional intro that gives “frank assessment of both the film’s own racist content and the racism of the times and environment into which it was released” and another hour-long recording of a panel discussion on the complicated legacy of "Gone With The Wind."

In this episode, our hosts Afra and Ina, joined by an old friend @Flyingpku, look into the film’s complicated legacy, the whitewashing, and romanticizing of the horrors of slavery. We discuss the following:

  • How the movie differs from the book and a deeper dive into several characters
  • The iconography of the “Southern Belle” and the long-lasting effects of glamourizing the Southern Antebellum (why plantation weddings are still a thing)
  • The problematic portrayal of slave characters, especially female slaves, in the movie, and how those stereotypes still perpetuate today’s pop culture (e.g. Aunt Jemima)
  • The romanticization of slavery and the inaccurate depiction of the Civil War
  • The “iconic” status of Gone With The Wind in Hollywood history and its unique reception in China (Greenlit by Deng Xiaoping and Jiang Zemin)

Links of articles we reference in the show:

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