"Liyab" is a story of today’s youth and their roles in modern society. It is about the unheard voices of the marginalized. It shows how the struggle for equality and human rights is a battle against apathy. Finally, it illustrates how the individualistic nature of today’s society has dislocated, divided, and discriminated the marginalized. "Liyab" explores these themes in a series of long takes, allowing the audience to observe the scenarios involving our four main characters.
- a student activist
- a rich Chinese girl bound by old traditions
- a photojournalist, and
- a closeted homosexual lover.
Their lives intersect in a “day in a life” narrative that tragically tests the strength of their beliefs. These situations expose the repressive state of today's society, which the characters – and their counterparts in reality – are challenged to overcome.
"Liyab" utilizes Noelle-Neumann’s Spiral of Silence and the Queer theory in order to explain the behavior of closeted homosexuals and how repression affects them. The film also heavily espouses on Egalitarian principles and feminism, particularly tackling a discourse on women empowerment through two female characters of similar beliefs differing only in method. Michel Foucault’s theory on Power Relations was also used to understand the continuing nature of rallies, while Neorealism became the film’s aesthetic for its overall style in portraying the visuals and in telling the story.
Gonzales, A. M. (2011), Liyab. Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication.
Keywords: Queer theory, feminism, spiral of silence, women empowerment, neorealism, student activism, egalitarianism, apathy, power relations, multiple character narrative, repression
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