Thursday, 2 December 2010


The dominant notions of disability are separated into the individual model, and the social model of disability. The individual model states that the disabled individual must conform to overcoming their disability, that they have a responsibility to overcome their disability. This perspective generally aims for the 'normalisation' of disabled people, often through medicalisation of their condition.
The social model is one that is evident in this clip, this deciphers between impairment ( the 'problem) and disability ( the way society views it as a negative). The idea is that the way society doesn't have a way to deal with the impairment, so it then becomes a disability, as the impaired person is given obstacles to overcome due to the negative view on their impairment.
Oliver stated in 1996 'Disability is produced in different forms, and in different proportions, in different cultures'
Society has produced the idea that people who deviate from the social expectation of normality are abnormal, e.g obese people could be classified as abnormal and to a certain extent have a disability. The presumption that a slender body is normal, fat and disabled people share low social status and fat people are blamed for their greed and lack of control over their bodies are all concepts society has generated on the stereotypes of overweight people.

In this clip the impairment of the main character is the severe burns on one side of his face. It is evident that some characters treat him differently due to his burns, and ultimately treat it as a disability. 
The clip begins looking through railings and barbed wire, which implies his burns are trapping him and preventing him to do as he pleases. The opening line of dialogue is 'I want my job back' which appears to be on a building site - this could reflect his want to build his life back together after his accident. We see the burnt side of his face before the healthy side, which reflects how society see's him; they see him as an ugly man with a burnt face rather than a normal human being. This is an enigma code as the audience want to discover how he got the burns. The men at the building site act as if they are wary of his face, which results into them avoiding eye contact and treating him possibly nicer than they normally would have done, this shows their pity towards his face rather than treating him as if his face was fine.
The woman who is getting her shopping out of the taxi is shocked when he helps her pick up her food, this could reflect societies honest view of him, rather than the front that is put on when talking to him; that he isn't aesthetically pleasing to look at and this degrades his status and power. The woman feels as if she has to justify her actions as he walks away, which re-enforces society seeing his face as a disability because if it was someone with a healthy face, no further action would have been taken.
The camera looks as if it is hand-held, as it is shaky and from realistic points of view (no extreme close ups or high angle shots) which again, re-enforces that how the different people behave towards him fits together on how society see's him.
As he is walking down the street the music has a tribal feel to it, that it is quite animalistic, the beat of the drum reflects his anger on how he is treated.
At this point we are only aware that his face is deformed, not that he is missing parts of his right hand. This illustrates how people judge others on a first impression, which is superficial yet this is why impaired people are given obstacles which creates a disability e.g people in wheelchairs, obese people, extremely short/tall people. We see how the 'impaired' individual appears and judge their ability on first impressions.
A slight sound bridge is used as he is walking on the street to the next scene in the recruitment office. The healthy side of his face is shown first, which reflects the sargeants reactin towards him as he see's him no differently to how he'd see someone with a healthy face. The shadow falling on his face in the office looks as if he is behind bars or in a cage, and that society has trapped him.
I think that this character challenges a stereotypical view of a 'disabled' person being pitiable and pathetic, as he acts as a healthy human being. It appears that his body is working, yet it is the appearance of his burnt face which causes people to judge his ability to do things.

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