Paris Is Burning Analysis

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The documentary "Paris is Burning" directed by Jennie Livingstone, as well as the article "The Homeless Community of the Piers" by Rob Maitra, both are harrowing accounts of the way our bigotry affects the lives of others. Our culture just as many other cultures ascribe certain roles as well as the rules of behavior for each gender, the male, and the female, rejecting everything in between. Even though these roles and rules change throughout time and differ from culture to culture depending on economic, social and political realities, the perpetuated throughout centuries views have an enormous impact on the social norms accepted and lived by in many communities in our country, with the emphasis on gender roles based in biology. Those who …show more content…
The majority of those who end up living on the streets come from financially disadvantaged, broken, dysfunctional families. They have nobody to turn to for support at a time in their lives when perhaps for the first time they discover they have different from their peers interests and desires to express their sexuality. Instead, they are often ridiculed and pushed away. They are abused physically, mentally, verbally and often sexually. They feel vulnerable and unprotected. Is is no surprise that when they find a community where they feel understood and accepted, where they receive support, and where they feel that the belong, they stay. The need to fit in, to feel accepted is so great that despite all the dangers, they continue to live on the streets, where they feel embraced, fulfilled and members of a larger community. Because they are homeless, left schools, and have no family support, to survive, to stay alive, they are forced to "turn up tricks" as one of them described. Many when they join the community, have not had their first sexual experience yet. The memories of their actions are often unbearable to them so to "dim" them or to forget they turn to drugs. Many end up dead somewhere in motel rooms or other shady places. As the documentary " Paris is Burning", they fulfillment of their dreams and aspirations in clubs or " houses" led by older, accomplished gay personalities. It is the " mothers" or the "fathers" of the houses that offer guidance and support to the youth, and a real sense of a family. Balls organized by the various houses provides an outlet to distinguish themselves, to shine, to be recognized, admired, and to be

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