Summary and Info
Fear of the Dark is an examination of the conjunction of specific themes and discourses associated with notions of racial difference. It represents the first systematic attempt to link cinematic production with Britain's colonial history in terms of the conjuncture of ''race'' , gender and sexuality. This study is an examination of the impact of a generation of post-war black settlement on representations of racial difference and black sexuality. The main films under discussion--Sapphire (1959), Flame in the Streets (1961), Leo the Last (1969), Pressure (1974), Black Joy (1977), Burning an Illusion (1981), Playing Away (1986), and Mona Lisa (1987)--are regarded as illustrations which indicate general ideological positions and discursive practices. A basic premise of these analyses is that in order to adequately analyze cinematic images of racial difference it is necessary to recognize and identify the extent to which historically, discourses of gender and sexuality have been racialized. The films examined are situated in their own immediate historical context and social issues suggested by the film in question are highlighted. It is argued that there is no single theoretical framework which can address all the issues raised and it is necessary, therefore, to draw on a number of different concepts in order to examine all the films. Thus the textual analyses draw on several cultural theories in order to elicit some of the meanings attached to images of blackness and whiteness, femininity and masculinity.