PETS OR MEAT: CLASS, IDEOLOGY, AND SPACE IN ROGER & ME

Wolfgang Natter, John P Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper offers a reading of Michael Moore's docu‐comedy, Roger & Me, a film ostensibly chronicling the director's effort to interrogate General Motors Chairman Roger Smith following massive plant closures in and around Flint, Michigan in the 1980s. Our analysis focuses on four key themes: (1) the status of “community” as an ideological lever both prior and subsequent to GM's layoffs; (2) the spatial consequences of economic restructuring, expressed most formidably in the division between public and private space; (3) the charge that Moore's film suffers from a lack of objectivity; and (4) the notable absence of any significant representation of labor resistance to the plant closures. The film's themes, we argue, coalesce in an emblematic sequence involving Rhonda Britton, a woman who sells rabbits as both pets and meat. The paper concludes by calling for increased attention on the part of geographers to filmic portrayal, and, more generally, to all forms of representation and the issues which surround them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)140-158
Number of pages19
JournalAntipode
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Earth-Surface Processes

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