Video

Your Money or Your Life

Laura Kipnis

1982, 45:00 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 145.00

A video essay on mugging and on the role played by an atmosphere of pervasive (white) urban fear in structuring and renewing racial antagonism and inequality. At the centre of the tape is a young white middle-class woman caught in an ideological half-nelson in which her genuine fear, whetted and animated by the media, becomes synonymous with racial suspicion and hostility. Her counterpart is a black mugger, who in telling a story of permanent unemployment, powerlessness, ambition, and cynicism, unmasks the ethos of the mugger as not dissimilar to the ethos of American capitalism.

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