Emma & Clueless

Published: 2021-09-29 04:20:03
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Category: Clueless

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C appropriates E’s 19th Century context into a contemp. Beverley Hill’s society embedded in material availability and conspicuous consumption. o Austen’s purpose not changed C satire of context and human nature C has other purpose. Question value and validity of texts Pomo transformation thesis: The transformation of a text helps develop and mold new meaning to its counterpart, and hence deepen the understanding of each text.
However, it is important to note that for this meaning is to be conveyed, many of the themes within the original text must remain the same, it is the context and the values inherent within these themes that change. o Both texts present, deluded central character living in own upper-class microcosm. Emma living in C 19th England  "handsome, clever and rich" woman of "one and twenty" with "nothing much to distress or vex her". Lives in a world based around inheritance, breeding, manners and respectability as means for social valuing. Cher is a 15 year old living in the "Noxema commercial" "land of imagists" that is Beverley Hills in the 1990’s. Social values based upon material availability, image and conspicuous consumption. Both protagonists attempt to transform a protege of lower class and elevate them to their higher status.

Emma’s naive intention of transforming Harriet by refining manners and intelligence (not to mention elevating ego). Ironic  contradicts stagnant class mobility of 19th England. Link sense of hierarchy retained in C. Cher introduces Tai to school cliques "Persian Mafia"  reflects sense of materialism and conspicuous consumption of society  "you have to own a BMW to sit with them".
Also reflected in first scene montage "Loadies that no respectable girl would date" loadies comment ironic because Cher tells Tai in the scene before that choosing a BF is a decision that "every girl has to make for herself". TAI  her transformation is aesthetic (not like in E) through "Cher’s main thrill in life – a make-over" reflects extent of importance placed on image and superficiality in modern context. When first presented with Tai she stands out dramatically wearing a flannel shirt, and with died red hair  as opposed to everyone in gym scene wearing black and white ( she is an outsider, of another class.
Interesting although she is supposedly moved up in class, she is always subtly dressed differently to Cher and Dionne (collars, etc, Ease with which Tai changes social status gives sense of social fluidity, as does fact that Tai talks back to Cher in confrontation “you’re a virgin who can’t drive”. Link more subtle in Emma where Harriet doesn’t confront Emma, but distances herself by communication through letters. Travis’ elevation of class also gives impression of social fluidity  he gets off drugs, becomes serious about skateboarding and joins a rehabilitation program. His is undercut by costuming in wedding scene. And also through final couplings in film heckerling upholds austen’s sense of hierarchy.
Teleology refuted. Although idea of "coupling" in C does not lead to marriage (as in Emma), important to note fact that marriage, or at least a "wedding" is the ideal and final goal for women. RE: final scene "I want sailor hats" in C weddings are deemed more important than marriage itself "you divorce wives, not children"; "husband number five". Although marriage is not equally valued in both contexts, the idea of domesticity is. In the C19th context of Emma, there was an up rise of the bourgeois and of their domesticity-based values. o This is also reflected in C WHEN Cher’s father values her for the menial tasks she performs in the home ‘ who takes care of the house? Who makes sure daddy’s had his orange juice?".
Leads back to the ideas of female oppression and the rebuffing of the notion of teleology. Both texts are bildungsromans deal with the personal and character transformations of heroines. o Satirical social comment on composed contexts. Transformation catalysed by male protagonist heroine has to submit to being wrong. Context changed o inherent themes same breakdown of high culture into pomo setting/society o coherent understanding of e for society embedded in material availability and conspicuous consumption.
Change of mop reflective of context change of narrative voice to voice over Omniscient 3rd person is visual language in clueless EG. Emma : "we’re just friends" in respect to Mr Elton o Omniscient 3rd person: "ad it been 10x more, 10x less, her companions admiration for her would’ve remained the same". EG. Cher : "I have a way normal life for a teenager" Shot of her picking out her clothes from a motorised wardrobe. Irony and contradiction between aural and visual. Both texts still satires of respective worlds.
Re: Pomo intro and relate back to question. All about values and attitudes.
Heckerling imaginative, etc in transformation of text but remains true to austen’s purpose ( to question and satirise the foibles of human nature. Whilst adding to her own; through the transformation of emma, heckerling has proven that even a "teenpic" can be valued, and hence reinstates her post-modern beliefs within the text. Emma and clueless contribute ot developing and reshaping the value of each text. Emma allows clueless to be valued, whilst clueless allows emma to be understood and accessible to a cohort grounded in a contemporary culture.

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