In the fields of media studies and feminist film theory, the male gaze is conceptually related to the behaviours of voyeurism looking as sexual pleasure. The phrase male gaze occurs only twice in visual pleasure and narrative cinema 1989. Delve into feminist film theory and see what modern directors are doing, in movies like thelma and louise, to challenge the concept of the male gaze. It is my theory that since the beginnings of the film industry, when males completely dominated the important production jobs, the male gaze has become a necessary visual narrative tool. Oct 05, 2016 an explanation of laura mulveys male gaze theory, and some thoughts on its relevance today. The male gaze theory, in a nutshell, is where women in the media are viewed from the eyes of a heterosexual man, and that these women are represented as passive objects of male desire. The male gaze in retrospect the chronicle of higher. Nov 15, 2018 a prominent example of the male gaze in film can be seen in the 2007 film transformers. The male gaze in transformers 2007 feminist film studies. The gaze is a widely accepted cinematic theory is that female characters in film exist solely through the eyes of the male characters. Male gaze is a term coined by film critic laura mulvey to describe the cinematic angle of a heterosexual male on a female character. Audiences are forced to view women from the point of view of a heterosexual male, even if they are heterosexual women or homosexual men.
A manner of treating womens bodies as objects to be surveyed, which is associated by feminists with hegemonic masculinity, both in everyday social interaction and in relation to their representation in visual media. Mulvey argues that in classic hollywood films in particular women are merely represented to provide visual pleasure to men, and the audience is constructed in a manner. Gaze can be defined as the way people look at subjects or objects in a given text. While the representation of women in film and television is a prominent topic of discussion in contemporary times, the issue was pioneered by feminist film theorist laura mulvey in her 1975 analysis of the male gaze, where she argues that viewers. In considering the way that films are put together, many feminist film critics have pointed to the male gaze that predominates in classical hollywood filmmaking. While mulvey uses a seemingly complex psychoanalytic structure to explain the objectification of women, not only within the narrative but also within the stylistic codes of hollywood film making, it. In feminist theory, the male gaze is the act of depicting women and the world, in the visual arts and in literature, from a masculine, heterosexual perspective that presents and represents women as sexual objects for the pleasure of the male viewer. The scene starts off with a shot of the backside of mikaela played by megan fox walking. Apr, 2017 home feminism laura mulvey, male gaze and the feminist film theory. Evolving theories of the male gaze essay english literature. Although the male gaze is present throughout most of the movie, i am going to be talking about one specific scene. A key idea of feminist film theory, the concept of the male gaze was introduced by scholar and filmmaker laura mulvey in her now famous 1975 essay, visual pleasure and narrative cinema. Race and gender in feminist film theory and claire pajaczkowska and lola youngs 1992 essay racism, representation, psychoanalysis, formerly latent questions of race and ethnicity enter the feminist conversation. Naomis role in the film is a good example of the male gaze theory.
The male gaze is a term from gaze theory that describes the tendency of works to assume a male viewpoint even when they do not have a specific narrative point of view, and in particular the tendency of works to present female characters as subjects of a mans visual appreciation. Jan 23, 2020 the term male gaze was coined in 1975 by film theorist laura mulvey. Mulvey argues that female main character, lisa fremont. Mulvey stated that women were objectified in film because heterosexual men were in control of the camera. This theory of the gaze as an instrument of mastery stripping female spectators of their agency met a lot of resistance, especially from feminist writer bell hooks.
An explanation of laura mulveys male gaze theory, and some thoughts on. The gaze is a term that describes how viewers engage with visual media. In brief, film theory is a way to think about the elements of film. Laura mulvey, male gaze and the feminist film theory by nasrullah mambrol on april, 2017 8 laura mulvey b. Male gaze the art and popular culture encyclopedia. Since the camera represents a male point of view, movies are shot from a male perspective. The male gaze and where not to find it feminist flim theory. This argument holds that through the use of various film. As fiction imitates life, and vice versa, the male gaze has. Originating in film theory and criticism in the 1970s, the gaze refers to how we look at visual representations. The concept was present in earlier studies of the gaze, specify but it was mulvey who brought it to the forefront.
Male gaze using film as case study linkedin slideshare. Mar 26, 2017 an exploration of laura mulveys theory the male gaze. Usually, it also looks at how film affectsis affected by the individual viewer as well as society as a whole. The term gaze is a technical term which was use in the film theory in the 1970s but now it has been used by media theorists as it refers to the way people gaze at an image. Film theory explained a beginners guide videomaker.
The semiotic study of woman as image and the psychoanalytic study of the male gaze had a lasting impact not only in film studies, but also within the wider fields of visual culture and cultural. The male gaze theory laura mulvey is a feminist film theorist from britain, best known for her essay on visual pleasure and narrative cinema. How to take care of your mental health while working from home. The male gaze theory was an original concept developed by feminist film critic laura mulvey in her 1975 essay titled visual pleasure and narrative cinema. In the visual and aesthetic presentations of narrative cinema, the male gaze has three. The notion of masquerade, initially introduced into feminist film theory by claire johnston and mary ann doane, and developed in relation to judith butlers theorization of gender performativity, has been applied to cinematic masculinities by film theorists. If you are a media studies teacher or students and would like me to make a specific mediarelated video. Visual pleasure and narrative cinema was an essay written by laura mulvey an essay which coined the term male gaze which soon went on to become a very well know and discussed theory in film, the male gaze occurs when the audience is put into the perspective of a het. Well, as part of our new feature feminist film theory 101 we will be breaking down the defintion of the male gaze and examining how the male gaze still dominates popular culture today. Jan 05, 2016 the gaze is a term that describes how viewers engage with visual media. In short, it asserts that there is a pattern of male domination that runs throughout popular culture, and this doesnt only determine what we seeit determines how we see. Oct 18, 2015 the objectification of women has prompted extensive debate in modern media and film theory. This is a short overview article on feminist theories of the male gaze in.
Sep 29, 2019 the male gaze is a buzzword that seems to get thrown around all the time, but what does it mean and is it still relevant today. Learn more about the male gaze and where not to find it when. In cinema, the male gaze looks while the female body is looked at. The feminist film theorist laura mulvey coined the concept of the male gaze in 1975. Dec 02, 2012 the male gaze the most interesting concept to come out of the male gaze theory is that of the activemale and passivefemale.
Laura mulvey, male gaze and the feminist film theory. In film theory, the point of view of a male spectator reproduced in both the cinematography and narrative conventions of cinema, in. Bringing feminist theory to bear on a new wave of psychoanalytic film criticism, the essay set out to demonstrate how the structure of hollywood films camera. In film, the male gaze depicts the world and women from the perspective of a heterosexual man, this in turn presents women as objects constructed for the pleasure of the male viewer.
Mulvey states that she intends to use freud and lacans concepts as a political weapon. This theory is defined as a specific lens through which we view visual pop culture. In her essay, mulvey focuses largely on hithcocks rear window, and understandably so. On the whole, this article will give a brief understanding of the history of film theory and some of the major schools of thought within film theory. Feminist film theory suggests that women are exposed to a male gaze. The development of feminist ideologies paralleled the emergence of film as the most prevalent entertainment media, earning the creative contingent of film the enmity of several feminist thinkers. Laura mulveys female gaze theory linkedin slideshare. What does the male gaze mean, and what about a female gaze. Challenging whether this concept is still relevant to an understanding of our cultural production. May 19, 2016 laura mulveys theory of the male gaze completely revolutionized our approach towards film criticism.
Rear window is so involved with the idea of the gaze, that it is essentially a film about the gaze. Still, mulveys idea about the male gaze has some validity to it, which we find in hitchcocks films. Male masquerade is a notion with interesting implications, destabilizing hegemonic. Dec 16, 2007 laura mulvey and her theory of the male gaze influenced by the works of freud, is key to the feminist film theory movement and has been of great influence since the mid 1970s. Its a mans world the male gaze and the film industry.
Mar 31, 2017 knowing the ideas behind feminist film theory will shed light on this controversial film. In essays such as jane gainess 1988 essay white privilege and looking relations. Nov 30, 2016 psychoanalysis entered into film theory in the 1970s with laura mulveys seminal paper visual pleasure in narrative cinema 1975. Husserls analysis of perception clearly states that any transcendent entity, an entity outside immanent consciousness, can only be seen in mere profiles thus never complete, at once. In her 1975 essay visual pleasure and narrative cinema, laura mulvey introduced the secondwave feminist concept of male gaze as a feature of gender power asymmetry in film. Mulveys contribution, however, inaugurated the intersection of film theory, psychoanalysis and feminism. In the video you are able to view her character in the eyes of james bond which again applies to the male gaze theory. The concept was first developed by feminist film critic laura mulvey in her 1975 essay entitled visual pleasure and narrative cinema. The male gaze in film and advertising anthromodeology. Male gaze is a term coined by film critic laura mulvey to describe the. Feminist film theory claims that the patriarchal system formats conventional movies and therefore inherits and supports its views and values. Visual pleasure and narrative cinema brought the term male gaze into the academic lexicon and eventually into common parlance.671 1021 821 510 1211 1083 1442 623 1048 1155 215 947 428 598 1276 1246 140 784 1154 385 958 162 1017 366 311 750 46 265 1359 800 966 1284 300 324 1420 1222 1194 1108 1277 26 192 1152 939 233