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A Passage to India: Images of India in U.K/U.S Feature Films from 1930-2000
Unformatted Document Text:  A Passage to India Page 12 of 29 Student Paper N=68) to be in rural areas, χ 2 (1, N = 1015 2 ) = 174.3, p < .001. Also, towns/villages in India were much more likely than Western locations to remain unidentified and unnamed. When they were named, Indian places were more likely to be given fictitious names as compared to Western places. The most commonly used strategy by film-makers for naming a place in India was to use “-pur/pore” as a suffix. For instance, Ranchipur is the setting for The Rains Came, Tantrapur is where Gunga Din supposedly takes place while Rajpore is one other such non-existent town created for the movies. Amongst the real urban locales, Calcutta in India and London in the West were the most frequently occurring featured cities. Presence of animals. A significantly larger number of scenes in India (19.2%, N=116) as compared to Western countries (2.9%, N=12) were devoted to featuring birds and animals, χ 2 (1, N = 1016) = 58.7, p < .001. Scenes were coded for absence or presence of discussion about or actual depiction of birds and animals. Animals commonly sighted in films about India are elephants, snakes (especially cobras and pythons), tigers, horses, scorpions, panthers, cheetahs, buffalos, cows, monkeys, camels, rats, pigs, bears, lizards, turtles, owls, monitor lizards, jackals, vultures, vampire bats, insects (mosquitoes, beetles and other bugs) and alligators. For example, a young lady (Shirley Temple) visiting India for the first time in the movie Wee Willie Winkie has several questions about the fauna in India. She asks her friend, “How do you keep mosquitoes from biting your knees?” and “Have you driven a buffalo before?” Images of actual animals often appear as part of the natural jungle, as urban beasts of draught, as modes of transportation or simply as part of a discussion about hunting/sport or about food/diet. 2 One of the scenes was not coded for because the locale was not identifiable by the researcher

Authors: Ramasubramanian, Srividya.
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A Passage to India
Page 12 of 29
Student Paper
N=68) to be in rural areas,
χ
2
(1, N = 1015
2
) = 174.3, p
< .001. Also, towns/villages in
India were much more likely than Western locations to remain unidentified and unnamed.
When they were named, Indian places were more likely to be given fictitious names as
compared to Western places. The most commonly used strategy by film-makers for
naming a place in India was to use “-pur/pore” as a suffix. For instance, Ranchipur is the
setting for The Rains Came, Tantrapur is where Gunga Din supposedly takes place while
Rajpore is one other such non-existent town created for the movies. Amongst the real
urban locales, Calcutta in India and London in the West were the most frequently
occurring featured cities.
Presence of animals. A significantly larger number of scenes in India (19.2%,
N=116) as compared to Western countries (2.9%, N=12) were devoted to featuring birds
and animals,
χ
2
(1, N = 1016) = 58.7, p
< .001. Scenes were coded for absence or
presence of discussion about or actual depiction of birds and animals. Animals commonly
sighted in films about India are elephants, snakes (especially cobras and pythons), tigers,
horses, scorpions, panthers, cheetahs, buffalos, cows, monkeys, camels, rats, pigs, bears,
lizards, turtles, owls, monitor lizards, jackals, vultures, vampire bats, insects (mosquitoes,
beetles and other bugs) and alligators. For example, a young lady (Shirley Temple)
visiting India for the first time in the movie Wee Willie Winkie has several questions
about the fauna in India. She asks her friend, “How do you keep mosquitoes from biting
your knees?” and “Have you driven a buffalo before?” Images of actual animals often
appear as part of the natural jungle, as urban beasts of draught, as modes of transportation
or simply as part of a discussion about hunting/sport or about food/diet.
2
One of the scenes was not coded for because the locale was not identifiable by the researcher


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