Racial Stereotypes in Horror Films - Free Essay Sample

Published: 2024-01-30
Racial Stereotypes in Horror Films - Free Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Movie Society Stereotypes
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1248 words
11 min read

Various horror films portray elements of racial stereotypes with certain people of given races not receiving adequate representations like others. The characters in the films are at times used to portray people from other races negatively based on their races. Horror movies involve monsters that cause mayhem and constant disturbance to humanity and the prevailing order. In the numerous horror movies, the monsters are used to enhance racial stereotypes in society. Monsters are always linked to practices that are forbidden, and people are educated on the need to make such practices forbidden in society.

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People from different races are entangled in varying cultural practices, which makes them distinct from each other. The difference in the practices shapes the view of others, and people tend to regard the culture of others as monstrous. The black people in the horror films are depicted as the real monsters and are made to play the starring roles of such monsters. Most of the films offer no solace regarding their struggles. Horror films are always associated with bad experiences, and in many cases, blacks are at the center stage of such experiences.

In Horror Noire, the blacks are depicted as criminals, while the film aims to establish the existing relationship between the history of the evolution of horror films and the history of the African-Americans. Through the film, the blacks are seen to have contributed significantly to the evolution of the horror film. The film portrays the blacks as uncivilized and always on the wrong side, distorting existing peace and stability. The history of the blacks as encountered in Horror Noire is often overlooked and taken to be unimportant; hence the film clearly shows the problems and oppressions the black people experience.

In the Horror Noire film, the movie is seen as a response to the history of black oppression, and this is evident in the Get Out movie in which the viewers anticipate a white character. Peele intentionally refuses to provide a white person hence cantering on the black characters denying the white viewers a white character hero in the film.

The Get Out was ideally intended for the black audiences indicating the racial bias on the part of the film producers and directors. The film is mainly about the birth of a nation targeting black viewers who tend to recognize the black horror nature brought by white power supremacy. Through the film, the world could be able to see the terror the black people went through due to the racial biases and segregation from the film, and it is evident that racism tends to thrive on the denial that people of color experience horror due to the racial stereotypes and biases that exists in the society. The feeling consequently led to the increased involvement of African-Americans in the production of horror films (Erik, 1993).

In Barbra’s Creed horror film, women are conceptualized as the only victims. The horror story is framed around the cultural norms of the Americans that terrorize various women. The race slavery from the violent past of the country tends to haunt the present practices in the production of horror films hence the creation of racial prejudices. The film portrays various faces regarding the monstrous feminine in which women are regarded as monstrous, archaic, and those with monstrous wombs with a close reference to the starring black women. Viewing women as castrators constitutes the sign face that portrays feminism as monstrous in the film. Through the film, it becomes easier to understand the evolution of cultural practices and how different races uphold and treat women as monstrous. The depiction is of how various communities value their customs and view how monstrous other customs have become (Barbara, 1993).

Barbra Creed utilizes a concept from Kristeva’s concept regarding the semiotic chora in determining the myths and the popular culture. According to the creed, representing the mother as an abject links them to Kristeva’s concept. From the two sides, it becomes clear to clarify various ideological strategies indicating that the horror film and genre are a result of the patriarchal and phallocentric society. The approach is carried out among various nations, and this affects the social order. Transforming women into a passive object traditionally depicts how women are treated in a monstrous manner, with specific races viewed as being at the forefront of victimizing women. The patriarchal construction of feminism is viewed as castrating women.

The culture of the monster is always depicted in horror films to indicate their ways of life, including their places of residence. The description of the dwelling place of the monster in Cohen’s theory shows that monsters are outcast creatures that should not dwell in the same place as human beings. Black Americans have been regarded as monsters and portrayed so due to their cultural practices and their ways of life. Their traditional methods of knowledge organization are rebuked fully, indicating how their cultural spaces are contested. The monster is regarded as the cultural differences, racial inclinations, sexual, and political differences and is viewed to have no place among the human races (Jerome, 1996).

Racial stereotypes are the cause of the existing differences and destroy the cultural apparatus in which individuality is constituted. Racism hinders the ability of people from different races to cordially interact and work together, and this reduces the space for the minority races to thrive. Racial animosity often leads to the distortion of social structure and causes tension in the social order.

Actions such as xenophobic renditions are regarded as the real monsters that should be eliminated in society. Other communities view others are archaic and traditional-oriented, and they live without clear systems of customs and traditions; hence they pose a danger to the existing order of the elite communities and races.

The linking of the monsters with the forbidden portrays how some races are regarded as outcasts due to their cultural practices and their skin colors. The minority races are oppressed and viewed as a threat to the survival of the elite races. Allowing African Americans to thrive in the economy is viewed as empowering them to take charge of the economic operations, and this cannot be permitted by various whites in the country. Racial prejudice continues to ravage the underlying basic principles aimed at promoting equality.

Other regions, such as Africa and Scandinavia, are regarded as monstrous regions that were initially inhabited by monsters and tended to be darker compared to other regions in the world. Their practices are seen as darker and unacceptable in some parts of the world due to the dangers they portray. Children from these nations are regarded as monstrous in other parts of the world where they visit to pursue further studies; hence they feel alienated and neglected to their origins and color. These perceptions and monstrous ideas are a creation of the races that view themselves as elite and above other races.


Racial stereotypes continue to ail many parts of the world hence the need for joint efforts to fight the vice that continues to ravage humanity and distort the social order. Certain races are associated with horror and demeaned as archaic and traditional cultures. Various horror films have been used to portray racial inclinations and how other races are treated in the global space due to their skin color and ways of life.

Works Cited

Creed, Barbara. The monstrous-feminine: Film, feminism, psychoanalysis. Psychology Press, 1993.

Cohen, Jeffrey Jerome. Monster theory: Reading culture. University of Minnesota Press, 1996.

Barnouw, Erik. Documentary: A history of the non-fiction film. Oxford University Press, USA, 1993.

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