SCREEN-L Archives

November 1995, Week 1


Options: Use Monospaced Font
Show Text Part by Default
Condense Mail Headers

Message: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Topic: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Author: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]

Print Reply
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Jeffrey Apfel <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 6 Nov 1995 14:01:49 -0800
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
text/plain (40 lines)
You wrote:
>Ulf Dalquist states that in _Terminator 2_, "Sarah isn't locked up
>without reason.  The pressure of knowing about the coming end of the
>world as we know it and the fact that she's the only one who could
>stop it, has definitely turned her into a psychotic (or whatever the
>clinical diagnosis would be)."
>Ulf has hit upon precisely the reason that the Sarah Connor character
>was (and is) so attractive to many young feminists.  This film gives
>the audience a female heroine--or more strictly speaking, a female
>*hero*.  Sarah Connor acts in exactly the same way that other, male,
>film action heroes act.  Why is that considered "psychotic?"
>Just my way of saying that the subject of "moral ambiguity and female
>characters in film" deserves some further interrogation in terms of
>its gender role assumptions, if any.
>Kimberly Ladd
>American Studies
>The College of William & Mary
I agree.  I have wondered too whether someone could do a study of the
different uses to which gender reversal motifs are put.  My seat of the
pants (oops!) reaction is that, when seen in a lot of older dramatic
literature, cross dressing or gender reverals serve to *highlight*
basic gender differences.  In much new stuff on this point in film,
role reversals seem to be making the opposite point--that Sarah has as
much "right" (whatever that means) to acting nuts in the face of the
apocolyse as any man.  Or that Thelma and Louise just happen to have
bonded like any two buddies in a road picture and have as much "right"
as any man to engage in crazy existential behavior.  The question is:
which approach is more reasonable?
Jeff Apfel
To signoff SCREEN-L, e-mail [log in to unmask] and put SIGNOFF SCREEN-L
in the message.  Problems?  Contact [log in to unmask]