Research Repository

“I knew you wasn’t soft”- masculinity in Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight and If Beale Street Could Talk

Pyjor, Zuzanna (2020) “I knew you wasn’t soft”- masculinity in Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight and If Beale Street Could Talk. Masters thesis, University of Essex.

Zuzanna Pyjor MA Film Studies (Open Access).pdf

Download (316kB) | Preview


The focus of this study is black masculinity presented in films written and directed by Barry Jenkins, as the director’s approach to African American manhood is arguably modern and offers a new, fresh perspective. As this dissertation asserts, characters created by Jenkins are complex and not easy to categorize, breaking with stereotypes that might be present in the media and the minds of the general audiences. The director’s films, therefore, stand in opposition to the mainstream Hollywood pictures of African Americans, as they focus on showcasing black experiences without relying on conventions and prevailing stereotypes. As the focus of this study is on representations of black masculinities, it also involves discussion of different types of manhood and their perceived expressions, as a more nuanced understanding of these is imperative to interpret images and characters that Jenkins presents. Additionally, to help to recognize and appreciate the director’s methods of filming and showcasing his characters, this dissertation also brings to attention the notion of counter-cinema.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Masculinity, Films, Black Men, Barry Jenkins, Counter Cinema
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2021 15:30
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2021 15:30

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item