"I am no longer afraid": A case study on the musical communication of trauma in narrative film and television
McGlynn, James Denis
University of California Press
In Hollywood film and narrative television, we often see filmmakers bestow narratives of personal tragedy, trauma and loss upon their protagonists. Whether or not this is seen as a time-tested and efficient literary device or as a hackneyed and superficial representation of trauma, it is undeniably one of the most recurrent tropes of characterization in narrative film. Exploring the traumatic past of a troubled protagonist is routinely used as an attempt to enhance audiences’ understanding of a character, affording us insights into their motivations, flaws and desires. Such narratives are equally used to account for the actions of unpardonable antagonists and antiheroes as Jeffrey Bullins reminds us  and, quite often, this “dark and troubled past” idiom simply serves filmmakers as a convenient means of narrative exposition. Pelin Başci describes this latter quality and the intersecting narrative frames it can afford a film, whereby diary entries, therapy sessions and other...
Film music , Film scores
McGlynn, J. D. (2021) '"I am no longer afraid": A Case Study on the Musical Communication of Trauma in Narrative Film and Television', Journal Of Popular Music Studies, 33, pp. 43-49. doi: 10.1525/jpms.2021.33.4.43
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