• The Construction of Racialized Criminality in Film: A Critical Analysis of The Shawshank Redemption (1994) and Just Mercy (2019)

      Marquette, Dominique
      The focus of this research is to examine the ways in which media representations of racialized criminality affect the public’s perceptions of race and its connection to criminality, authority and punishment. This is done methodologically through the deep critical analysis of the films The Shawshank Redemption (1994) and Just Mercy (2019). Many forms of media are readily and constantly available to the public, for some more than others based on a number of intersecting social factors. Because of its prevalence, the media and the stories they tell are important to analyze and should not be ignored. The films The Shawshank Redemption (1994) and Just Mercy (2019) were chosen for their depiction of racialized characters in and related to the context of the prison. In addition, the passage of time between their release dates allows for a thorough investigation of possible evolution of these representations. It is imperative that this research be approached from an intersectional point of view, allowing it to accurately expose the ways in which oppression, as it relates to race, may or may not be present in the films and affect the public’s perceptions of racialized criminality. These films represent people of colour and their interactions with white people, in positions of power and submission in each film. As well, there are intersections of race, gender, and sexuality as they relate to criminality, authority and punishment.