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Sexuality in the Servant - Report Example

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The writer of this report "Sexuality in the Servant" analyzes the plot of Joseph Losey's 1963 film 'The Servant'. From the start of the film, there is an atmosphere of tense sexuality that underpins the developing class-based relationship between characters…
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Sexuality in the Servant
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Download file to see previous pages Traditionally, explicit sexuality has been regarded by film-makers as a means of indicating danger: sexually active women, for example, tend to be seen by audiences to be devious or dangerous, while chaste women are seen as innocent. Joseph Losey's 1963 film The Servant takes many of these assumptions about sexuality in British cinema and subverts them, showing how the traditional rules of British society can be torn down as repressed sexuality finally explodes. Based on a script by Harold Pinter, The Servant is a psychological drama that shows how sexuality and class are inextricably linked in British life, and how trauma in one can lead to trauma in the other. 
The Servant is the story of Tony (James Fox), a wealthy young Londoner who hires a manservant, Hugo Barrett (Dick Bogarde). It was adapted from Robin Maugham’s novel of the same title and directed by Joseph Losey. Many critics have hailed it as a film that explored a version of a classic narrative of innocence having been corrupted by evil. Here, there is an emphasis on the moral bankruptcy of contemporary society especially in the case of the educated class. With Tony, as the rich young man who did not have any moral convictions and clear and viable personal goals, the narrative was an exposition of how he came to be dominated by those others who have stronger personalities. In a strictly chronological manner, he was heavily under the influence of Susan (Wendy Craig), his maid, Vera (Susan Miles), and, of course, by Barrett.
At first, Barrett appears to be a typical manservant, and this leads him to develop what appears to be a good relationship with his master. Caute (1994) argues that this good relationship represents "the most that society would tolerate in terms of a masters familiarity with his manservant" (Caute, 1994, p. 170). However, the dynamics of the relationship is deeper. This theme is best represented in the investigation of Barrett’s resentment as a servant to a person he believes to be a lesser man. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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