White Material Analysis

The events in the White Material film happen during the last periods of colonialism of in the unnamed African state. In the movie, colonialism impacted the people in this region. This change ultimately affected the main character, who ended up killing her own husband. Colonialism also influenced those who were under the rule. They tended to proceed with what their colonizers did to them. Thus, they responded to violence by violence. It can be seen that the horrors, which individuals faced from other human beings led to psychological damage. This kind of harm can have tremendous adverse effects; hence, a person turns to the one with murderous tendencies that results in dehumanization. It is true that indeed colonialism changes even the most civilized people. The director of the White Material movie uses particular sounds to convey the message and show the true horror that the characters in the film encounter. The blacks were mistreated on the basis of their skin color that created double standards among the authorities who were supposed to be the voice of reason. Hence, the Africans were subjected to colonization and harsh treatment that left them feeling dehumanized. Therefore, the combination of terrifying scenes with distinct and powerful sounds helps tell the story clearly and prove that the negative colonial ideologies persist in the colonized state thereby dehumanizing its inhabitants.

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The colonized area maintained the murderous tendencies after the period of colonization showing the dehumanization of citizens. During the colonial era, the colonized people were brutally murdered. The killings were merciless. In the movie, one can see a few individuals who were under the colonial rule and continued with this murdering spree. For example, Manuel is burnt alive. Thus, his death was horrific and merciless. The murder was committed by the Africans who were subject to colonial domination. Therefore, the practice was adopted by those who were colonized. The Africans also killed Andre who posed no threat to them. He was actually in the process of fleeing that makes his murder even more unnecessary similarly to numerous deaths of the colonized nation.

The colonized people carried on with stealing since the colonial ideology was dehumanizing them. During the colonial era, the properties of Africans were often taken by force by the colonialists, in particular such valuables as traditional jewelry, land and even their wives. In the movie, it became evident that the colonized individuals proceeded with this practice. Hence, the rebels possesses Maria’s clothing and jewelry. She did not hand it over to them, but they stole it. This type of behavior was peculiar to colonizers, and later the colonized ones adopted it as well thereby proving that the latter followed this activity of the colonizers. The brutality that Africans were subjected to was not a matter of concern to the authorities, who reacted differently when the same violent acts were committed against the whites by Hitler. As a result, this is a proof that their reasoning on various issues depended on the race of the parties involved.

In addition, the colonized resorted to sexual violence, which was a part of colonial ideology that persisted further inducing dehumanization. In the colonial era, the colonizers could rape women and sometimes boys. It would be expected that such violence could not be executed by the colonized citizens because they knew from personal experience how terrible the act was. However, this was not the case. Maria’s son Manuel chased some rebels, but they cornered him. Later on, he was found and tied on his hands and knees. Hence, this could be an indication that he was raped, which was supported by his behavior after the incident, as his personality was completely altered. This change is sometimes possible if the victim of rape does not receive psychological help. Therefore, this example is another proof that the ideologies of colonialists affect the colonized nation.

The colonized people also resorted to home invasion and land grabbing, which was a part of the colonial ideology that promoted dehumanization. The colonialists used treachery to conquer the African lands. They often concluded treaties and imposed land rates after which the Africans would eventually lose their land. Moreover, the colonialists could harm the owners of the land and take it by force. The chief of the area obtained the land owned by Andre by dishonest means. Thus, the chief knew that due to the rebels’ advancement, Andre and his family might leave the area. Therefore, he used this opportunity to buy the land from them that is rather cunning, because they did not have to sell it, as they could always return. The rebels also invaded Maria’s home and seized the property. All these activities were peculiar to the colonized individuals; as a result, one may claim that the ideologies of the colonialists could be relayed to the colonized nation.

The colonized individuals carried on with forceful recruitment into military service, which was practiced by the colonialists showing their dehumanization. The colonizers did not have the required number of soldiers to proceed with their conquest. Hence, they employed a merciless strategy. Whenever they conquered a region they forced the community to supply them with people who could be enlisted into the army. This practice is seen to have been adopted by the rebels. The latter had child soldiers, and it was not possible for them to achieve the voluntary service of children. Consequently, the activity performed by the colonizers progressed to be emulated by the Africans.

Furthermore, the colonized people were characterized by the unprecedented aggression, which was peculiar to the colonial ideology. The colonizers were extremely aggressive. They harmed anyone who opposed them, even those who had already yielded to them. For example, they mistreated their workers and had slaves, which is a manifestation of intense aggression. This activity is seen during the scene where the car was stolen from Maria. Hence, the rebels killed an unarmed individual running away by the car. This violent act was not necessary; the rebels had a gun and the victims would comply with their orders eventually. Besides, such a type of aggression is pertinent to the colonizers as well.

Colonization dehumanized even the most civilized man that was evidenced by the movie. The Africans showed some behaviors, which were previously displayed by the colonizers that actually changed them. For example, having seen how the land could be grabbed by the colonizers, the chief who was a civilized civil servant behaved in an uncivilized manner and acquired the property owned by Andre’s family as a result. Moreover, the chain of events caused by colonialism led to the change of Maria: a mother, a wife and also a hardworking woman. She ended up killing her step father in a gruesome inhumane manner. This fact indicates that colonization indeed dehumanized the majority of citizens.

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Additionally, the colonized people resorted to racist activities, which were practiced by the colonialists. During the colonial period, the colonized nations displayed racism in different ways. Thus, they perpetrated violence because of racial affiliation where the representatives of different races were targeted. The colonizers also gave racist names based on one’s color. The first evidence in the movie is the title, namely White Material. Besides, the main actress was treated with respect to her skin color, which was white. Throughout the film, various characters called her according to her color. For example, when she wanted to get off the bus, one of the passengers said that the white woman wanted to step out of the bus. Therefore, this fact also shows that racist activities of the colonials were followed by the colonized citizens.

Furthermore, the scene where the police force killed the children was compelling. In this part, the soldiers were stealthily getting inside the house. Then they y went ahead and murdered the kids inside the house. In this part, the viewers can see the blood of children spilling onto the bathtub. The scene’s effect is also boosted by the digenic sound of the throat being cut. The combination of the scene details together with the audio makes this episode a compelling scene.

The scene with Manuel’s charred remains was also quite strong. In this part, Maria killed her step-father. She finally arrived to the burnt house only to find the remains of her son. In agony, she took some wood and attacked her step-father murdering him. This episode used sad background music together with the voice of an actress when she hit the step-father. In addition, particular sound was added when the wood stroke his body. Hence, these factors makes the scene compelling. Besides, the movie frequently uses zoom-shots, which were important because upon zooming at the characters, their reactions could be clearly recorder. Therefore, the viewers were enabled to see the facial expressions of actors and actresses that allowed them to connect with the movie and feel their fear, anger or agony.

In summary, the White Material movie shows the deplorable condition of some African states after the civil war. The film demonstrates how colonialism altered the nature of human beings using the issue of race as justification for their brutality. Thus, people got dehumanized by their unpleasant experiences under the cruel colonial rule. Such brutality was considered evil when committed to the whites, but when it was applied to the blacks, there was no need for alarm. Consequently, this mischief created tension between races, where one race wanted to appear dominant over another.