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What if I had been the hero?: investigating women's cinema

posted on 2023-06-08, 11:39 authored by Sue Thornham
Explores issues of subjectivity, agency and regulation; narrative and narration; film, authorship and gender; and image, What happens when women tell their own stories in film? In What If I Had Been the Hero?, Sue Thornham addresses this question through an exploration of a wide range of films, from experimental feminist film to mainstream Hollywood, and from the 1970s to the present day, by film-makers including Sally Potter, Jane Campion, Deepa Mehta, Patricia Rozema and Lynne Ramsay. Her discussion takes in films from India and Argentina as well as Europe, Canada, Australia and the US. Not content to take the 'post feminist' makeover film or the figure of the 'action chick' as evidence of women's increased power and status, Sue Thornham raises key issues about women as authors, subjects and heroes of their narratives. She argues that simple reversals of gendered positions of hero/heroine, active/passive, and subject/object are not enough. Drawing on a wide range of feminist theoretical sources, What If I Had Been the Hero? makes an important intervention into contemporary debates, situating film-making within a rich history of female creativity, and insisting on the continuing importance of feminist theory.ntasy and desire in relation to women's film


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  • Published


British Film Institute



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  • Media and Film Publications

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