The Desire to Desire: The Woman's Film of the 1940s

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Indiana University Press, 1987 - Performing Arts - 211 pages

"Brilliantly argued and lucidly written... the definitive psychoanalytic account of the repression of woman in Hollywood cinema." --Tania Modleski

"... complex and challenging... " --The Women"s Review of Books

"... magnificently ambitious... some of the most original and intelligent essays in film theory today." --Journal of Modern Literature

"... deeply commited to the psychoanalytic approach... " --Contemporary Sociology

The Desire to Desire traces the way in which female spectatorship is specified primarily by its lapses or failures, arguing that the women's film simultaneously asserts and denies female desire, attributing to the woman only an impossible gaze.

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I was assigned this book as part of my Feminist Theory class. It is a really well thought out book but it isn't an entertaining read by any means. Mostly, I think Doane read a little too much into the films she included, but I think that is expected from this subject based on the other feminist theory articles I had to read. 

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