Screening the male re-examines the problematic status of masculinity both in Hollywood cinema and feminist film theory.
Classical Hollywood cinema has been theoretically established as a vast pleasure machine, manufacturing an idealized viewer through its phallocentric ideological apparatus. Feminist criticism has shown how difficult it is for the female viewer to resist becoming implicated in this representational system. But the theroies have overlooked the significance of the problem itself - of the masuline motivation at the core of the system. The essays here explore those male characters, spectators, and performers who occupy positions conventionally encoded as "feminine" in Hollywood narrative and questions just how secure that orthodox male position is.
Screening the Male brings together an impressive group of both established and emerging scholars from Britain, the United States and Australia unified by a concern with issues that film theorists have exclusively inked to the femninie and not the masculne: spectacle, masochism, passivity, masquerade and, most of all, the body as it signifies gendered, racial, class and generatonal differences.
`Shows comprehensively from Valentino and Astaire through Douglas and Eastwood to Stallone and Schwarzenegger that it is wrong to take masculinity for granted … An important resource book both on courses and for further research.' - Alan Sinfield, Gay Times
Contributors: Susan Jeffords, Yvonne Tasker, Cynthia J.Fuchs, Helen W. Robbins, Steven Cohan, Ina Rae Hark, Peter Lehman, Gaylyn Studlar, Robyn Wiegman, Steven Neale, Lucy Fischer, Christine Holmlund, Barbara Cred, Adam Knee