The Shawshank Redemption, Personal Power

Topic: ArtMusic
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Last updated: June 6, 2019

Advanced English Mary Gordon-Thomson 1) Explain how The Shawshank Redemption represents the personal power 2) Compare The Shawshank Redemption with another text in relation to the power of one 3) Do you agree with how The Shawshank Redemption represents organisational power 4) Compose your own text representing personal power 1.

The Shawshank Redemption representing personal power The entire plot of this film relies on how personal power is striped from the prisoners and the effect that this has on them. With out this aspect the film would have very little or no effect in displaying Andy’s escape.Personal power is represented through out the film in a multiple of ways including scenes such as “institutionalised” and the music scene where Andy finds the record and plays it over the P. A system. Personal power is taken by a number of ways through out the film but mostly it is by isolation and imprisonment (both metaphorical and literal).

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The prisoners are living in a world of multiple layers of isolations. Starting from the large enclosed recreation yard to the smaller work crews down to the cellblock, cells, and leading to solitary confinement.Each of these layers are represented both physically and visually as well as through out the spoken thoughts of Red and significant lines by Andy. Imprisonment both mentally and physically also takes the personal power of choice away from the inmates.

It seems at stages the only kind of power Andy or any of the other inmates hold is the freedom of thought and hope. Andy is shown to have much more hope then the other prisoners which is displayed by his “inner light” as Red calls it. “All I know for sure is that Andy Dufresne wasn’t much like me or anyone else I ever knew. . . . It was a kind of inner light he carried around with him. This was spoken by Red after Andy traded tax advice with Bryon Hadley for beer for his workmates.

It is Andys sense of self-worth that gives him the confidence and ability to make decisions such as these. The idea of institutionalisation is mentioned frequently by Red through out the film. This is the concept of how the prison takes away a persons ability to think independently and places them in a position of dependence on the routines and regulations of the prison. Red has the personal power to over come this feeling of institutionalisation by not following the path of Brookes after making parole.

Personal power is also represented in the music scene, possibly the most couragous (or perhaps just stupid) act Andy does in his time in the prison. By deliberatly disobaying orders from the Warden and continueing the music (a personal choice Andy makes) he puts himself at risk but gives the prisoners a few moments of freedom inside their regulated lives. Of course he pays the price for this but he is able to hold the music in his mind and uses that personal power to over come the pain he faces whilst in solitary confinement for two months. These are only displays of personal power that are written in the script.Cinematic techniques such as colour, camera angles, contrast, juxtoposition and repetition are all used to highlight and represent different aspects of personal power. The Shawshank Redemption represents personal power extremely well through out the film in these ways and more. This all in collaboration displays this aspect of power in a clear and obvious way that is able to be understood with out in depth analays like what we have done.

2. The Shawshank Redemption in comparision with Do you have power? By Julius Babarinsa regarding the power of one.The power of one means the power that one individual has over another person, place or thing.

In The Shawshank Redemption it is obvious how Andy has the individual power to not only change his circumstances but also to vastly improve the lives of the other prisoners in Shawshank prison. Andy is able to (with the power of persistence) create an entire library that allows the inmates to read and learn when they previously could not. Andy is also able to bring hope back into the lives of many of his friends in the prison such as Red. “I hope Andy is down there. I hope I can make it across the border.I hope to see my friend and shake his hand.

I hope the Pacific is as blue as it has been in my dreams. I hope. ” In Julius Babarinsa’s poem Do you have power? He creates a long list of people and what they have power over and concludes the poem with: “We should realize that we are all citizens of this world we owe it to our children to use our powers positively to help make this world a better and friendly place So that we can create a just and compassionate society” By doing this he not only signifies the power of one but also enforces the question of how can you, the responder; use this power to benefit the world.Both The Shawshank Redemption and this poem have clear and precise ideals on what is able to be achieved as an individual and the expectations that this puts on each person to be the best that they can be.

Whether that be breaking out of prison with a rock hammer or electing the right representative in a vote. 3. Organisational power in The Shawshank Redemption The Shawshank Redemption is extremely effective in its representation of organisational power. It uses a lot of different cinematic techniques such as repetition, contrasts and costume to clearly display different organisational power through out the film.There are two main forces of organisational power in The Shawshank Redemption. The guards are one group of organised power and the other organised power is the routine.

The guards and the routine are both forces made by the prison but they use their power in completely different ways. The guards are brutal, they use force to scare the prisoners to do as they are told and completely rely on threats and intimidation to keep their position. The power that they hold may be very strong at their peak but when power relies on abuse and dishonesty is can not last forever.The routine is a very different kind of organisational power. It is present in every single shot inside the prison, from things as simple as their clothing to what time they eat, sleep and use the bathroom.

It is unescapable and yet seems to be irrelevant in comparison to the obvious power of the guards. The reality is, it is not physical and mental abuse of the prisoners that wears them down, is it the constant and ever strong drone of this routine that break them. If given enough time it strips away everything individual the prisoners could previously have, even up to something as personal as a name.The guards’ power is obvious; it is shown in their uniforms, specifically angled shots to display height and status and the constant reminder of weaponry they have at their disposal, whether that be a fist, a gun or a baton.

The routines power however is much more subtle and therefore can go unnoticed. It is shown effectively in the repetition of significant events (such as how Reds parole was being rejected and Red and Brookes leaving from the prison being exactly the same), Consistent and never changing features in lighting and colours with in the prison and also how time and age are shown.These two very different displays of organisational power are contrasting and yet both so effective through out the film. The direct choice of having more then one type of organisational power clearly displays exactly how powerful each organisation is and this adds greatly to our understanding and appreciation of the film. To answer whether or not I agree with how this type of power is displayed I hope it is clear to see I defiantly agree and I think they did a marvellous job of displaying and explaining organisational power through out the film. 4.Own text representing personal power My new home was the epitome of dank. The roof leaked, the walls thin and windows non-existent.

It was there that I met Cooper. Cooper was my saviour. My brother.

My best friend. He understood me in a way that I had never dreamt possible. Together, we found a light within the darkness.

Every day, a new adventure beckoned. A game to be played; a secret smile to be shared. He made the slow years pass just a little bit faster, until finally, we decided to leave our murky prison and face the open air. Together, we would make it. That much was certain.

The world outside the orphanages gates was harsher than either of us had anticipated, and it wasn’t long before we were making money the only way that we knew how. He would steal, and I would sell myself. We aspired to save enough money to rent a little place. To create that of which neither of us ever had, a home. However, that dream always seemed to be just that, a dream. Unachievable and unreachable. It was then, when our happiness seemed so shattered, that Cooper devised a plan.

We would combine our talents. It was simple really; I would lure men into an ally, where he would beat them and steal their money.The first time this happened, I was unaware of the plan.

The blood on his fists made my stomach turn and I screamed at him to cease. For the first, but not the last time, he scared me. Soon he became more ambitious. The plan changed. After seducing a stranger, instead of a dark street, I would allow him to lead me into his home. Cooper following quietly from behind, and while I distracted the man of the house, he would rob him of his every possession.

In this way, the money that we needed to rebuild our lives was quickly collected.I told him that I would get a job in the market place to help; that I wanted to do this right. He disagreed and insisted that we continue, just one more job. And then another. And another.

Cooper would not see sense. He began to muffle my complaints with his fists. I was scared but I knew nothing else. He was my everything.

Without him, I could not exist. Eventually, the inevitable occurred. His anger overpowered his rational thought and a man lost his life beneath Coopers thrashing fists. How could I love a murderer? My brother.

My best friend. Where did that boy go?The light that he once sparked within me had disappeared, and I knew that I must leave him. The following night I fled beneath a cloak of darkness. Miserable and lonely, I searched the streets for a familiar face; instead I found a familiar place. A whorehouse. My training had served me well, and I was accepted into one of the most highly respected brothels in town, the bell and whistle.

This particular bordello served a higher class of customers then those with whom I had previously associated myself. We entertained society’s elite, royals, noblemen, high ranked officials, and, as you are aware, members of the church.

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