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February 1996, Week 4


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Sean Desilets <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 27 Feb 1996 18:26:01 -0500
text/plain (41 lines)
On Tue, 27 Feb 1996, Tony Williams wrote:
>  Could not the cited example be used to disprove the Clover thesis in that
> the audience (male/female or both) identified with a sadistically violent
> character and equally enjoyed his demise? Where was the Final Girl in this
> film? Surely, Clover's too easily accepted thesis needs further investigation
> in terms of the many films around in addition to those she selectively uses
> before it becomes canonized like Laura Mulvey's "Visual Pleasure and Narrative
> Cinema"?
>   Yes, these instances do exist. But if Mulvey selectively chose certain
> les and became subject to criticism re. the complexity she ignored in her
> analsys, surely it is about time the Clover thesis received greater
> ion than has hithertoo been the case.
>         Tony Williams
        First of all, I was unaware that this text was even widely read,
never mind in danger of being cannonized. I read it years ago and am
myself unsure that I'd accept some of its finer points myself, so I hope
my provisional sketch of Clover's thesis is standing in for a reading of
the text. I could easily be completely misrepresenting her. I'm wide open
to hearing a critique of Clover's position, but I don't think suggesting
that film audiences are capable of shifting identifications in any way
contradicts her thesis. I think I made it clear that she doesn't contest
the idea that male slasher-film audiences idetify with the killers. Her
innovation (and I'm by no means sure that this was an innovation at the
time, I'd never read it before) is that she sees that identification as
shifting and multiple.
        I'd love to hear your (or anybody's) critique of Clover.
Sean Desilets
Tufts University
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