The Human Gaze: How An Author’s Representation of Evangelicals Impacts the Viewer

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by Virginia Dickens, Elaine Olla, and Liz Smith

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2 thoughts on “The Human Gaze: How An Author’s Representation of Evangelicals Impacts the Viewer

  1. Joy Min

    Response to the Class Discussion Summary section: I also think that Jesus Camp displays only the very, very extreme group of evangelicals, even though the directors of this documentary claim the documentary to be “neutral.” However, I personally don’t find the statistics(that 25% of Americans describe themselves as evangelicals) surprising, because a lot of the Christians identify themselves as evangelicals, and America is one of the most Christian countries in the world. Not all evangelicals act sort of “crazy” as they do in Jesus Camp documentary, so I think it makes sense for the statistics to be 25%. So I do agree with the blog post’s point that this documentary represents a subculture within the evangelical faith. Some of the things that they showed in the film definitely only pertain to a very small percentage of evangelicals. For example, to some evangelicals, speaking in tongues shouldn’t even be done without an interpreter in the same space who is able to explain what the person who spoke in tongues actually said. So as the class agreed, I think that the documentary was just overall very biased.

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  2. brittawelch

    One of the most important aspects that this blog post touches on is the way in which the documentary was constructed and how this could have perhaps skewed the audience’s interpretation of Evangelism. Is Evangelism truly that extreme and was this as objective a portrayal as possible? One thing that really stood out to me was how the filmmakers chose to show the children doing an interpretive dance with face paint. It came across very primitive or even like a cult. It is choices such as this that are interesting to think about when considering that the filmmakers claim they were taking a neutral stance on Evangelism. As with any form of media, documentaries can frame an issue in a certain way to sway public opinion. It would be extremely interesting to watch a documentary made by Evangelists themselves. Would that change our interpretation or understanding of Evangelism as a way of life?

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