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Contemporary Visual Culture: Representation of Women - Term Paper Example

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In this paper, the author demonstrates why It is important to understand the role of women as defined by the male gaze is central to understanding the position of women in society. Also, the author describes a woman’s position in social stratification…
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Contemporary Visual Culture: Representation of Women
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Download file to see previous pages According to Armstrong and Catherine (2006, pp. 23-34), the growing female presence in the film industry was seen as a positive step towards the realization of this goal by drawing attention to feminist issues and putting forth alternatives and more true to life views of women. However, these images are still mediated by the same factors in the traditional film such as moving camera, composition, editing, lighting and all varieties of sound (Barnet 1993, pp. 45-51; Pointon 1994, pp. 25-33). It is important to acknowledge the value of inserting a positive representation of women in film but real change would only be realized by considering the role of film in society from the semiotic point of view.
A film is a major form of visual popular culture and it is associated with visual representations and the gaze (Barnet 1993, pp. 45-51). In the film, the gaze is basically the outlook of the camera (Kjell 1999, pp. 115-128). The gaze can be used as a powerful discourse because the outlook of the camera fosters identification with the audience. Armstrong and Catherine (2006, pp. 23-34) and Pointon (1994, pp. 25-33) assert that the representation of women, particularly in popular culture has been dissected. This dissection in the film allows women artists to realize the extent to which the controlling discourse flows over popular culture and affects everyday issues. The foregoing discussion looks at the tenets of Laura Mulvey’s Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema and the works of contemporary Australian women artists such as Julia Rrap and Tracey Moffatt.    In 1973, Laura Mulvey wrote the ‘Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema’ which was published in 1975 in the influential British film theory. This essay is what Laura Mulvey is best known for. Psychoanalysis is a major tool to discover the patterns of fascination that have molded us (Mulvey 1975, pp. 6-18). Psychoanalysis is used as a political weapon to unfold the ways in which the patriarchal social structures the sexual object (Griselda 2006, pp. 56-65). In other words, Mulvey’s work is indicative of a psychoanalytical theory as a political weapon and demonstrates the way in which unconsciousness of the patriarchal society has structured the film form. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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