EUH PAPER 1 - Yaunek Murray EUH 2021 Section Instructor...

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Yaunek Murray EUH 2021 Section Instructor: Reed Due Date: February 21, 2011 “The Adventures of Becket and the Vikings in the Winter” When asked to give discourse on the selected films for class viewing, one is inclined to agree with the claim made in the prompt. The kings of these specific eras were indeed misrepresented and were given unjustly contributed characteristics, given the particular arduous circumstances of their imperial rule. In The Vikings (1958) the king Aella came to power following a Viking raid on the castle of his cousin, King Edwin and his wife Edith of Northumbria. During this era, the Vikings were one of the strongest military empires in Western Europe. They were the most feared neighbors to the north for various European leaders of that period (Lecture 2). To understand the possible character embellishment in these films one must first understand the politics of the period. The nation state was non-existent in medieval times and during the days of the Angevin Empire period as well. Within one particular seen from The Viking (1958), Aella accuses his cousin, Egbert, of being a traitor; Egbert says to him: “lies will not sustain a tyrant.” Truthfully during this period in time a comment like this would hold little significance in weight, if any. Whether Aella was a tyrant or not was irrelevant, it would be his ‘royal blood’ that would sustain him as whatever sort of sovereign he chose to be. There was no descendants close enough to King Edwin to rule in his stead- excluding Eric, the illegitimate rape child of Edith and Ragnar the Viking king. One may find it quite amusing that the most likeable character in The Viking (1958), in fact, was Ragnar; who with wasting little time managed to rape a woman so early in the movie. Although Ragnar was the father of one of the films primary antagonist his
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personality and character framework begged for the audience’s sentiment. Rosenzweig and Thelen might disagree: By the late 1980s scholars from many fields decrying this omission and developing theories and methods to study popular reception, reader response, and visitor behavior. The studies in these new fields suggested that Americans engaged historical texts (and all cultural forms) in ways molded by their own personalities, experiences, and traditions and that their engagements were often quite different from what the producers of those texts had hoped for. (242) These studies give insight into the manner in which Vikings were portrayed in the 1958 film, and the ideal image created in the minds of most people when asked about the appearance of a Viking. Notice the similarity between costumes in this movie and the attire of the Vikings in the modern CapitalOne credit card commercials. The movie was advertised as a dead accurate artifact of Production Design Cinema; as much information was already known about the Vikings before its release, the replica ships and costumes and the drinking horns, were all strong period props and did justice for the films accuracy and authenticity (Section 4:1/13/2011). Although the film gave the optical illusion of historical reality, many of the underlying themes of
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EUH PAPER 1 - Yaunek Murray EUH 2021 Section Instructor...

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