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Slumdog Cometh

In: Film and Music

Submitted By tarajoshi
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Geetanjali Joshi Mishra Ravi Mishra Research scholars Department of English and Modern European Languages, University of Lucknow Lucknow geetanjalijoshi2008@gmail.com ravidnmishra@gmail.com

Slumdog Cometh!
A reading of the Oscar winning movie „Slumdog Millionair‟ in the backdrop of Althuser‟s theory of Ideology and Interpellation

This paper is an effort to read the Oscar winner movie „Slumdog Millionair‟ in the context of Althuser‟s observations on the subject of ideology. We shall, in the course of this paper, point to the case of interpellation in the movie and also demonstrate how the movie furthers an already existing ideology.

Althuser‟s theory of ISA (ideological state apparatus) and RSA (repressive state apparatus) are only too well known. They have been one among the many theories of realistic appraisals of the society and an extension of Althuser's study of Ideology. These theories must be touched upon briefly before we move to place the Hollywood blockbuster in their perspective.

Ideology is a very specific term used in the post-Marxist theories, such as Christian ideology, democratic ideology, feminist ideology, Marxist ideology, etc. Luis Althusser (1977) shows that there are two major mechanisms of State organization for ensuring the people of the State. The first is the RSA, or Repressive State Apparatuses that can enforce the public behaviour directly, like police, the

criminal justice and prison system. The ISAs are some kind of institutions, which manufacture ideologies like schools, literary studies, religions, the family, legal systems, politics, arts, sports, etc help people to build up ideas and values, and to believe the State as such is „eternal‟. In discussing the concept of Ideology as material existence, Althuser takes the notion of „subject‟ as his central term „upon which everything depends‟. His arguments that there is no...

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