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nmadison.A2.140 - 1 Madison Nina Madison Professor Openshaw...

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1 Madison Nina Madison Professor Openshaw WRIT 140 29 September 2011 Three Perspectives “The paper set out to answer the question of how people combine monetary transfers with intimate relationships” “Students of the intersection between monetary transfers and intimate social relations face a choice among three ways of analyzing that relationship”. As students, we are often posed questions and quite often answer with our own perspectives. Viviana A. Zelizer discusses these choices of Hostile Worlds, Nothing But, and Differentiated Ties in her article The Purchase of Intimacy. Hostile Word’s perspective supports the separation of money and intimacy, which would inevitably lead to moral degradation. Nothing But perspective expresses the transferring of these two is merely a reflection of rational exchange, cultural values, and coercion. Differentiated Ties perspective illustrates how money and intimacy intermingle and are contingent of the specific situation. These three points of view can be seen in the film, The Apartment, produced by Billy Wilder who explores the relationship of money and intimacy through the story of the protagonist, C. C. Baxter, who subjects himself to exploitation by exchanging his apartment for corporate promotions. In this essay, I intend to demonstrate that although The Apartment can be interpreted to support any one of the three perspectives Zelizer discusses, the ultimate ending and the personality portrayed by many characters demonstrates the producer’s intent for people to decipher the film as predominately supporting the Hostile World’s perspective.
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2 The Differentiated Ties is “intimate relations involving monetary transfers include a variety of social relations each marked by a distinctive pattern of payment” (Zelizer). In the movie, Fran has fallen in love with Mr. Shieldrakes and blindly believes that he feels the same for her. For Christmas, Fran gives Mr. Shieldrakes a CD with songs that are always played in their meeting spot at the Chinese restraunt. While Fran’s gift hold sentimental value, Mr. Shieldrakes gift of $100 fails to measure up to what Fran expected. As he tells her to “go and buy yourself something”, Fran internally goes through a thought process of what her relationship means to Shieldrakes and feels like a prostitute being given money in exchange for sex. Her
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