The Double Consciousness In Film The Final Quarter

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 The sociological analysis will draw upon ‘The Final Quarter’ a documentary film directed by Ian Darling that addresses Indigenous Australians in sport and the politics behind racism in sports after AFL player Adam Goodes, an Indigenous man who publicly advocated against racism and was named Australian of the year was subject to intense criticism from media commentators and the public after calling out a thirteen-year-old girl at a game for using a racial slur and calling him an ape in regards to his Indigenous identity. The Final Quarter is a film produced by Shark Island Production in 2019 about the final stages of Indigenous Australian Adam Goodes football career during which he was the target or repetitive booing by opposition fans at game and criticism within the media. The film is sourced entirely from archival footage, photos and interviews sourced from television, radio, and newspapers that reviews the national conversation that took place over this time and the discussions that have followed on the racial discrimination faced by Indigenous Australians when publicly speaking out about racism.

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The methodology foundation of the empirical evidence is a film compromised entirely or archival footage aired during the time Adam Goodes was a prominent topic of criticism in both social media posts, interviews, and news segments. The film provides a methodological spectrum that allows individuals to observe the data through images and video analysis, where the cinematography of the film is used to emphasis the discrimination and attitudes conceived by society. The film encourages individuals to examine ourselves and explore all levels of racism, whether apparent or unconscious.

The film highlights the double consciousness Adam Goodes struggled with and experienced during his final years as an athlete within a society whose perception of him negatively deemed him as an inferior outsider every time he identified with or drew attention to his Indigenous culture and the racial democracy he experienced as a result. Both critical race theory and double consciousness become abundantly relevant within the film when Goodes was called an ape as a racial slur against his Indigenous culture at a game by a thirteen-year-old girl of the opposition team and called her out for it. The comment itself from a thirteen-year-old girl emphasises the way race has been socially constructed by a society that discriminates to cultures who conform against the white population. In the documentary Goodes states that he did not blame the young girl for calling him an ape but rather used her as an example of social construction in the face of racism in Australia, drawing attention and blame to the culture where she was hearing the racial slurs and influence of discrimination towards Indigenous people. The film also highlights Goodes experience of double consciousness as he tries to maintain and express his Indigenous identity while receiving criticism as a result. When he spoke eloquently about the need to stamp out racism in all facets of Australian life and to teach children more inclusive ideals, it was interpreted as an attack on the nation. When he celebrated his Indigenous heritage on the field with a spirited traditional war jig after kicking a goal, in the competition’s dedicated Indigenous round no less, he was lambasted for being too confronting

07 July 2022

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