The Cosmopolitan Mythology : A Study of Cosmopolitan Storytelling on Netflix

Sammanfattning: There has in recent decades been a cosmopolitan turn in the social sciences and humanities. Earlier studies have examined how media narratives facilitate cosmopolitan engagement with “the Other”, but the role of fictional entertainment is insufficiently explored. Addressing this, the dissertation examines a purposive sample of 130 films from 13 genres available on Netflix, a leading subscription video-on-demand service. Based on a narratological examination of the sample, which is dominated by American and contemporary titles, 14 cosmopolitan narrative genres are identified, the eight most important of which are analyzed in case studies.This forms basis for the theorization of the narratives as a cosmopolitan mythology, a collection of archetypal stories about cosmopolitan interactions between human groups. These narratives, it is argued, have similar functions to emergent cosmopolitan imagined communities as myths and collective memories had to the development of ethnic and national communities. However, the cosmopolitanism identified in the sample is frequently expressed through so-called White savior narratives and negative stereotypes of non-Whites are commonly occurring. In conclusion, it is argued that these ideological contradictions are connected to social contradictions in contemporary Western societies.

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