Lesbian Film Theory and Criticism

Theoretical approaches to the cinematic representation of lesbianism represent a particularly complex and fruitful area of feminist film study, as well as one filled with substantial debate. Issues arise, for instance, concerning the exact definition of a lesbian film as well as the relationship between lesbian films and those that focus on other forms of… Read More Lesbian Film Theory and Criticism

Laura Mulvey, Male Gaze and the Feminist Film Theory

Laura Mulvey (b. 1941) is Professor of Film and Media Studies at Birkbeck College, University of London. She is the author of Visual and Other Pleasures (1989), Fetishism and Curiosity (1996), Citizen Kane (1992) and Death 24x a Second (2006). She is the director of a number of avantgarde films made in the 1970s and 1980s,… Read More Laura Mulvey, Male Gaze and the Feminist Film Theory

Pauline Johnson and Radical Humanism

Pauline  Johnson has sought to re-situate feminism within the humanist tradition. Arguing against the anti-humanism of contemporary feminism, Johnson’s Feminism as Radical Humanism (1994) argues that feminism must see itself as “the interpreter of the cultural ideals of modern humanism.” To this end Johnson suggests that humanism must be interpreted as the “value idea of… Read More Pauline Johnson and Radical Humanism

Michele Barrett and Marxist Feminism

Writing under the influence of Marx and cultural materialism, Michele Barrett in Women ‘s Oppression Today (1988) argues that a feminist analysis of “culture” is imperative today. Barrett’s engagements with aesthetics and subjectivity have proved to be the cutting edge of Marxist feminism. In her famous 1980 lecture “Feminism and the Definition of Cultural Politics,”… Read More Michele Barrett and Marxist Feminism

Helene Cixous and Poststructuralist Feminist Theory

Helene Cixous‘ work has been influenced by Derridean deconstruction. Essays such as The Laugh of the Medusa, Sorties, Coming to Writing and Other Essays (1991), Readings and The Newly Born Woman (with Catherine Clement, translation in 1986) are her attempts to discover a writing that is fluid, transgressive and beyond binary systems of logic. Cixous has also… Read More Helene Cixous and Poststructuralist Feminist Theory

Luce Irigaray and Psychoanalytic Feminism

In her works like Speculum of the Other Woman (translated 1985) and This Sex Which is Not One (1987), Luce Irigaray has argued that the woman has been constructed as the specular Other of man in all Western discourses. Combining Psychoanalysis, philosophy and linguistics, Irigaray’s work has been enormously influential in poststructuralist feminist thought. Irigaray’s rejection of… Read More Luce Irigaray and Psychoanalytic Feminism

The Political Theory of Carole Pateman

Carole Pateman‘s work has been in the realm of political theory. Pateman argues that for political theory to become more democratic it must develop a truly general theory of the political. This must necessarily avoid the trap of disqualifying certain categories of persons from being political subjects. Rereading Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau and Marx, Pateman’s work… Read More The Political Theory of Carole Pateman