Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Cate Blanchett sounds off on trigger warnings; she’s right!

Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett says that people are too comfortable avoiding difficult conversations in their daily lives.

Seeing as Cate Blanchett has been one of the most respected actresses for more than a quarter-century now, it’s best not to set her off. But it’s possible. And while Lydia Tár (her best performance, if I do say so) has her own musings on life, technology and Bach, what might get Cate Blanchett showing disgust than anything is trigger warnings.

Speaking with The Times, Cate Blanchett noted that difficult conversation is necessary in our society but is so rarely implemented, adding that so-called trigger warnings aren’t helping. “Culturally we are terrified of tough conversations. Boss to employee. Employee to boss. Friend to friend. But we need them. We talk about radical candour, but when there’s a trigger warning in front of something you are implying that there is a lack of mutual respect or that the subject hasn’t been properly interrogated.” Oh, we can just hear those words coming out of the mouth of Lydia Tár.

Many consider trigger warnings – little disclaimers sometimes meant to contextualize content (or cover somebody’s ass, depending on your reading) – a form of being talked down to, the mutual respect Cate Blanchett mentions. This can all be seen as that lack of trust in the viewer as well, automatically suspecting they won’t understand the context of the film they’re about to watch. For one example, Disney began adding trigger warnings about racial stereotypes depicted in films like Peter Pan and Dumbo. More recently, actual screenings of James Bond movies were hit with warnings, with the British Film Institute of all organizations declaring, “Many of these films contain language, images or other content that reflect views prevalent in its time, but will cause offence today (as they did then).”

While Cate Blanchett isn’t specifically calling out these instances – like, say, Ralph Fiennes, who said they lessen the impact of art – she does raise strong points on the matter. When we see such disclaimers from Disney and other companies, is it really generating conversation? Is there an “interrogation” going on? Not usually, and any “conversation” usually just ends with comments like, “That’s dumb” – which they can be if interpreted as such under a certain eye.

What do you make of Cate Blanchett’s comments on trigger warnings? Do you think they generate proper conversation? Give us your thoughts below.

Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/cate-blanchett-trigger-warnings/

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NY Editor

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