1 Hitchcock: Feminism, Women

July 16, 2022–345w

Hitchcock: Feminism, Women

See auteurism (Modleski)

Feminists use H’s works as means to elucidate issues and problems relevant to women in patriarchy.

Modleski: In so doing, these critics implicitly challenge and decenter directorial authority by considering H’s work as the expression of cultural att and practices existing to some extent outside of the artist’s control.

Teresa de Lauretis:

The female spectator identifies with the active and desiring male subject, as well as with the passive and fetishized object of the gaze.

H’s detractors claim that we should not be taking H seriously because his films express and encourage misogyny.

Modleski: H is neither utterly misogynistic nor sympathetic to women and their plight in patriarchy, but his work is characterized by ambivalence toward femininity.

Vertigo: The nature of desire and how it is constituted within patriarchal culture.

Guilty women:

Blackmail: Annie Ondra’s perf as Alice anticipates Grace Kelly and Tippi Hedren.

Victim Women:

In Frenzy and Psycho, sexual violent content conveyed thru extreme fragmentation of woman’s body.

The camera distance and angle objectify parts of their bodies with special emphasis on crotch, ankle, and breast.

The female victim in most H films reps balance between vulnerability and responsibility. That balance does not exist in the male victims or children (wholly vulnerable and not responsible at all).

Women dreamer

Daisy in The Lodger and Lina in Suspicion, self-hoodwinked dreamers.

Like Madeleine, Lina’s vision is clouded, a condition that often affects H’s heroines.

Identity–Men Naming women

Tania Modleski cites the line from the sing “Mona Lisa,” which is heard in Rear Window: “Men have named you.”

How women are named or referred to by the male heroes

The Man Who Knew Too Much (56):

Stewart names Jo for Josehine, but her fans know her as “jo Conway,” her name before she wed.

Stewart introduces her as “Mrs. McKenna,” and “a doctor’s wife.”

Narrative Structure: Gender

Rope and I Confess are notable for dropping the women out of the male story.

How H tried to substitute for women’s role/

No triangle (2 men and woman) and no mediating women.