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August 1997, Week 4


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Bet MacArthur <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 26 Aug 1997 02:22:13 -0400
text/plain (33 lines)
To Jenni Olson, Chris Worsnop, Lee Parpart, Jeff, Patricia Lewis, Charlie
Harris, Khalid Halhoul, Ulf Dahlquist, Doug Jordan, and SCREEN-L colleagues:
         Thank you for your responses to our recent inquiry about films
containing or in some way addressing 'perversion'. We especially thank
readers who wrote us wishing to help, but who find the phrasing of our
original inquiry over-general or too detached.  The frustration you
experience in aiming to help us is, unfortunately, par for those now actively
re-examining the title topic. The idea and scope of 'perversion' are now
undergoing remarkably complex debate, and no introduction brief enough to
preface a short query among film people could ever serve our purpose very
neatly---that of *not narrowing* nor prejudging what might be relevant.
       The 1998 topic for our annual psychoanalytic film series here in
Boston will be "Gender, Identity, and Perversion," prompted in part by a
discussion of Kaplan's recent book _Female Perversions_, and the 1997 film of
the same name.  While Kaplan takes up, as quite central, issues of gender in
perversion, not everyone agrees with this move.  Nor do all agree on the role
of 'sexuality' in the construction of 'perversion,' as some of you noted.
      BTW, it wasn't the <category> 'perversion' we declined to defend, but
any of the <specific movies> already suggested to us as pertinent, whose
titles we felt it would be helpful to mention to readers in our query.  Our
principal concern is simply that our knowledge of movies _we_ consider
relevant might be be too limited, and we wish to learn more by querying what
_others_ might find pertinent in popular film. Respecting the diversity of
our own debate, we anticipated as much from a knowledgeable larger audience
such as this one.
Many thanks,
Bet MacArthur
Cambridge MA
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