Daily Archives: June 4th, 2004

Class distinctions

I’ve been thinking about class distinctions and their representations.

Actually, I started by thinking about war. How is this for degrees of separation?
— Reading Tomorrow, When the War began with my Yr9 class
— Doing war poetry at the end of this semester, to get them thinking about the realities
–Someone suggested watching something like Toy Soldiers, because it’s about a school taken over by terrorists.
— Sean Astin stars in it
— Sean Astin is also Sam Gamgee
— Thinking about explaining the relationship between Sam and Frodo, because I’m sure some would see it as at least hinting at homosexuality (“It’s me, Mr Frodo, your own Sam…”).
— Deciding I would say something like “It’s a sentimental, nostalgic take on the ideal relationship between a man and his closest servant” – which, thinking about it and then remembering Biggles, is often also attributed to an officer and his batman.
— “A MAN and his servant”?!?!

That’s when I realised that that phrase completely de-sexualises, and disempowers, the lower class. Quite a realisation.

As well, of course, I’m sure that it was mostly an upper-class idealisation; I wonder if the lower class visualisation would have had the two on a more equal footing?