Straight, Christian, White, Able-Bodied, Male and Property Holding (SCWAMP)


First, you will need to watch the film, Save the Last Dance.

  1. What does the acronym “SCWAMP” stand for?
  2. What is the general premise/plot line of Save the Last Dance?”
  3. What is the gist of author Lisa Grinner’s argument in “Hip Hop Sees No Color…” ? In other words, what does the identification and application of the SCWAMP framework to Save the Last Dance & other films like it ultimately reveal?
  4. Provide THREE examples of SCWAMP elements in Save the Last Dance. For each example, explain how it is an example of SCWAMP at work.
  5. Name another cultural text (movie, TV show, web series, etc.) where an example of the emphasis on a SCWAMP trait is evident. Describe the example, & explain how it is an example of the SCWAMP framework at work.
  6. Imagine you are remaking Save the Last Dance. What are TWO changes you could make to lessen the impact of, and emphasis on, SCWAMP elements, OR that would remove or lessen the sort of racist narratives Dr. Simone suggests often appear in “colorblind cinema” movies? NOTE: one of your changes CANNOT be to make the two leads the same race. That would completely change the character of the film, and that’s not what we’re aiming for here. The point is to still be able to tell an interracial love story, just one less reliant on stereotypes and the values reflected in the SCWAMP framework.
  7. Lastly, discuss a film that you read at least a little bit differently now, after considering Grinner’s SCWAMP framework, and/or Dr. Simone’s suggestions about how racist and/or culturally insensitive narratives often are quite prevalent in films that claim to be “colorblind” and truly embracing of difference & diversity. You can name any film other than Save The Last Dance. What movie, if you apply a critical, “Colorblind Cinema” lens to it, or you evaluate it in terms of Grinner’s SCWAMP framework, seems a bit different to you now – and why? You can deal with just about any identity aspect – it doesn’t have to be race/ethnicity. You can use Grinner’s framework for instance and say, “I hadn’t really thought about the way the kid in a wheelchair was dealt with in this film vs how the able-bodied kids are depicted until now, but now I see that……………”. (Be specific and thorough, but don’t think you have to be wordy – one to three cogent, detailed paragraphs will suffice.)


                                                     Racial Stereotyping


Straight, Christian, White, Able-Bodied, Male and Property Holding


Sara, a white girl from the suburbs of Chicago, dreams of being a ballerina, but after her mother is killed in a car crash while she was heading to her audition. Sara eventually moves in with her father I the south side of Chicago, a predominately African American neighborhood where she starts giving up on her dreams. Sarah also transfers to an African American school, where she becomes one of the few white students. She meets Chenille and fall in love with his brother, Derrick on the basis of sharing the same life aspirations and goals, such as getting to colleges. While the two love to dance, Dereck teaches Sarah how to dance in hip hop culture and act African American.


The identification and application of Grinner’s SCWAMP framework help reveal the privileges and benefits in a given film connected to each of the qualities listed. By breaking down the ideals demonstrated in each category, the framework helps identify the most commonly understood or known set of beliefs or set of values that guide a culture as portrayed in a film. Therefore, Grinner’s SCWAMP framework ultimately tells us ahata or who is least or most valued in a film and our culture.


One example of SCWAMP elements in “Save the Last Dance” is the scene where Sarah attends her new school for the first time, and people are required to walk through a metal detector. Sarah walks through the metal detector at the same time as an African American kid, but when it beeps, the African American kid is stopped, but Sarah is not. The African American kid is thoroughly searched while Sarah walks without being stopped. As the SCWAMP framework, the quality of being white means having privilege and benefits. This scene shows how African Americans are stereotyped as criminals by concluding that between Sarah and the African kid, the latter was more likely to be in the wrong based on race…………for help with this assignment contact us via email Address:

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