Uploaded by Mohamed Anis Ferchichi

Laura Mulvey Presentation

Laura Mulvey’s
“Visual Pleasure in Narrative Cinema”
By: Kiana Cardenas, Allie Lopes
About The Author
Laura Mulvey
A British feminist film theorist.
Born August 15, 1941
Went to college at St. Hilda’s College in Oxford
Created the theory of the “Male Gaze”
Main Points
Traditional film depends upon and reinforces the
power of the ‘male gaze’
We have normalized looking at the divided
between “active male and passive female”
Women are seen as the object of desire
Traditional film reinforces what Rich would call
compulsory heterosexuality
Key Words
Phallocentrism: focused on the phallus or penis
**It is seen as a symbol of male dominance**
Scopophilia: human sexuality that revolves around the sexual pleasure
that one obtains by looking at pictures or videos of eroticism.
Voyeuristic gaze: Controlling gaze, women objectified, eroticized, frozen
Fetishized gaze: ‘object becomes reassuring rather than dangerous’
Important Quotes
“Unconscious of patriarchal society has structured film form”
“Silent image of women still tied to her place as bearer of meaning [object], not
maker of meaning [subject]”
“Female unconscious which are scarcely relevant to phallocentric theory: the
sexing of the female infant and her relationship to the symbolic”
Main Theme
In Her Own Words...
“Ultimate challenge: how to fight the
unconscious structured like a language
(formed critically at the moment of arrival of
language) while still caught within the
language of patriarchy”
Mulvey wishes for us to acknowledge the influence the
patriarchy has over film and the audience’s participation in the
objectification of women.
Why is gender so central to cinema in Mulvey’s point of view?
In your opinion, has society influenced the way we create and/or
view media? Why/why not?
Are there any movies that are out today that prove Mulvey’s
argument?Are there any movies that counteract her argument?