Announcements. Luna Fest - March 4th - 6pm-9pm in the Price Center Ballrooms. Lunafest is a film festival fundraiser for, by, and about women. 7 short films, refreshments, and a raffle. Tickets are $6 for students/$7 general public.
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Lunafest is a film festival fundraiser for, by, and about women.
7 short films, refreshments, and a raffle. Tickets are $6 for students/$7 general public.
All proceeds go to The Breast Cancer Fund and the UCSD Sexual Assault Center.
Gender and Media
In the early 1970s Claire Johnston was one of the first to draw on semiotics and Lacanian psychoanalysis suggesting:
Johnston was critical of Hollywood cinema, but also saw it as an important site for study and intervention.
She called for an alternative narrative cinema.
Together these two frameworks provide film theorists with ways for thinking about how the viewer as a subject participates in the meaning of the film.
It was a powerful argument insofar as it shifted analysis to the relationship of the spectator to the image.
Theory of Spectatorship: Not an approach to analyzing the psychological relationships represented in the film, but the ways in which cinema positions us as viewers.
More than the act of looking, the gaze is a viewing relationship characteristic of a particular set of social circumstances.
Mulvey argues that the cinema spectator is made to identify with the male look, because the camera films from the optical, as well as libidinal, point of view of the male character. It does this through the ways that:
“It is said that analyzing pleasure or beauty destroys it. That is the intention of this article.”
“Psychoanalytic film theory is thus appropriated here as a political weapon, demonstrating the way the unconscious of patriarchal society has structured film form”
Psychoanalytic film theory:
Pleasure functions in two ways:
1. Scopophilia: Pleasure in looking at objects (Voyeuristic gaze)
2. Narcissism: Identification with on screen (male) protagonist as a controlling figure
Lacan: the Mirror Stage and becoming a subject
Lacan uses this term to refer to the way in which our egos are constituted
Type of cinema is important - Hollywood Cinema
Mulvey suggests that the image of the woman is at once an object of desire and a threat.
Castration anxiety - woman as bearer of the look sparks fear because she represent the lack of a phallus.
Resolved through one of two ways:
How are we encouraged to identify with Jeffries?
How do we view Lisa Freemont?
Mulvey advocates for an alternative Cinema. One that doesn’t adhere to narrative representational conventions.
Why not just have active female protagonists? (The gaze is masculine within patriarchal logic.)
Why not just have active female protagonists?
What are techniques of distanciation?
Story of a woman whose sexual dissatisfaction masks an enormous anger.
1970’s porn film - found footage - painted on
Eliminated images of women
Replaced the sound
What are some of the problems of her argument?
Mulvey’s essay has inspired many challenges and critiques within feminist film theory:
“For feminist criticism to ignore the full complexity of women’s contradictory situation is to risk acquiescing in masculine contempt for female activities.” Tania Modleski
Mary Anne Doane and others began to consider the female spectator in relation to “the Woman’s Film” (during the 1940s there were many films that featured female protagonists targeting female audiences).
Meeting of Two Queens, Cecilia Barriga,