How is Australian masculinity portrayed in the film "Tom White"

Essay by turkeymurkeyHigh School, 10th gradeA+, May 2006

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"Tom White", directed by Alkinos Tsilimidoshas is a portrayal of various aspects of Australian masculinity.

This is a story of a man's journey from an apparently stable suburban family life to homelessness in the big city. It is about humiliation and impotent fury, due to the loss of one significant thing; the man's career.

Many Australian males are identified as the 'bread winner', the economic provider for the family. Therefore, they recognise and take pride of their masculinity through their work. In this film, Tom White is the breadwinner. However he abruptly fails to maintain this identity. Consequently, He sees himself as a "man of no good fortune." This film portrays the severe effects joblessness has upon a man, the loss of dignity, hope and masculinity. During Tom's absence, the wife had no choice but to sell their house due to economic reasons. Furthermore, this proves the importance of Tom's status to his family.

Tom's leading role as a father and husband all contribute to an average man's capabilities in the Australian Society.

Another representation of Australian Masculinity is their inability to express their emotions and thoughts. Nor do they take in account of other's perspective. This is conveyed in Tom's journey towards self-awareness, but he remains unaware of the effect of what he has done on his family and those around him.

Australian masculinity is indicated to be tough and the unwillingness to seek help. Similar to most Australian males, Tom does not seek counselling or charity. Rather he actively avoids it and denies the truth.

For many Australian males their emotional outpourings are limited. This is expressed as Tom tried to describe his pain, except his friend Matt interrupted him by saying, "You don't have to call it anything". Australian Males are actually discouraged from naming their problems. Australian masculinity is the potential to be impregnable and independent, which is what Tom has strived to be.