Political Differences And Sensibilities In 12 Years A Slave And Their Power To Transform


From a political scientist’s point of view the analysis of 12 Years a Slave both movie and novel is a truce of the political situation in America. There is a vivid presentation of racism, profanity, sex, nudity and violence that is directed to American blacks which is an explicit portrayal of slavery and all vices that accompany it. In this particular work the description of politics of difference, political sensibilities and political transformations will be investigated in the various scenes and book chapters. The movie is about an educated Solomon Northup’s pain stacking experience that was kidnapped through betrayal by friends and sold to compassionate Benedict Cumberbatch and later to a ferocious slaver, Edwin Epps where he meets Partsey and other enslaved blacks undergoing the ferocious and dehumanizing practice that is against human rights of freedom for 12 years. McQueen successfully demonstrates the inequalities in the society and how religion was utilized to bring about oppression by selective preaching and the exploitation of human labor to run the plantation.

There are many political differences that are depicted in this movie which can be discussed as follows. For instance there are incalculable situations that openly show inequality. Northup is betrayed and sold to slavery for the mere fact of being black. In Northern Orleans where he first finds himself the power that a whites privilege themselves with to see blacks as their cane plantation keepers to farm under brutal supervision is hair raising. Furthermore Eliza is sold with her two children by shear jealous of her princess culminating into frequent scenes of child abuse and women rape. A scene of a couple of slaves fondling one another for about 40 seconds is paralleled by one female raped at about the same moment. In as much as superiority complex was highly exalted in the 1800s the bathing of men and women in the open air depicts a society that is deprived of respect for humanity and thus a need to fight for equality and freedom. It is unbearable to watch the woman savagely caned with full view of nudity. The film therefore justifies the quest to seek equal rights and privileges.

In as much as direct effect of governance is not observed in the film, there is need to single out various incidences that call for political sensibility. Indeed it is profane to continually address blacks as Niger especially in the context in which it is used. When Edwin Epps says niggers are careless and that they should obey they lord and be beaten in many stripes the pictures is that of racial capitalism that encourages racial dominance of whites to blacks. Coerciveness using Biblical allusion worsens the situation since none will ever tolerate misuse of religion to subject them. Violence is another key theme that encourages struggle for freedom. Although hidden from the eye of the camera the sounds of whips on a slave with wounds inflicts pain to the viewer. In another incidence women have to care for open wounds of their colleague. Brutal hanging of bodies and episodes of convulsion and dog ambush is intolerable. Eppy’s wife hits Partsey with liquor and proceeds to scratch her cheeks. This is arguable a fight worth a court case and political leaders should therefore devise laws to end violence that is racially fueled just as it embittered slaves to fight for freedom.

Further analysis of the film and book shows various motivations that slaves picked from their agony to fight for political reforms. So much is wrapped in the McQueen’s work. The shame of the brutality and racial prejudice of the white against black in the salve trade error and the subsequent notions that have been carried forward to insidiously preach superiority of one race in the New Orleans is worth mentioning. Religion is abused to institute sanctions and oppression. By explicit showing of the rape scenes and brutal beating of slaves the resulting exposition mobs the disfavored to fight for freedom in contemporary America. Fight for identity in the slave tour by Bennedict Cumberbatch shows that not only the oppressed by also the oppressor has seen the need to embrace political freedom and equality. The redemption of Northup at the very closing scenes and the aid he receives to set his colleagues demonstrates how the achievement of freedom from sexual oppression, forced labor and profanity can be fought through collective responsibilities. Both parties should see the necessity to input efforts that yield equality to foster development in society since the fight for freedom is a show of how blacks and white are similar in both efforts and responsibility in developing America given the attention that the movie attracted all over America.

In summary 12 years a Slave is an expression of the social gap and political capitalism as seen with mistreatments of blacks to work in the cane and cotton plantations of whites. It is a political mirror that silently urges political reforms by demonstrating the social evils that Northup and his colleagues suffer in the form of racial demeaning, sexual abuse and forced labor. The end triumph from the ordeal is however a show that the mentioned Political sensibilities can fuel political transformations.

© RaintreeWriting.com. All rights reserved. |