The Monstrous-feminine: Film, Feminism, Psychoanalysis

Front Cover
Routledge, 1993 - Performing Arts - 182 pages
In almost all critical writings on the horror film, woman is conceptualised only as victim. In The Monstrous-Feminine Barbara Creed challenges this patriarchal view by arguing that the prototype of all definitions of the monstrous is the female reproductive body.
With close reference to a number of classic horror films including the Alien trilogy, The Exorcist and Psycho, Creed analyses the seven `faces' of the monstrous-feminine: archaic mother, monstrous womb, vampire, witch, possessed body, monstrous mother and castrator. Her argument that man fears woman as castrator, rather than as castrated, questions not only Freudian theories of sexual difference but existing theories of spectatorship and fetishism, providing a provocative re-reading of classical and contemporary film and theoretical texts.

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Tumsi - LibraryThing

Her argument disrupts Freudian and Lacanian theories of sexual difference as well as existing theories of spectatorship and fetishism in relation to the male and female gaze in the cinema to provide a ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - echaika - LibraryThing

I don't believe in psychoanalysis and this didn't convert me, although there are interesting points made here and there. If you buy the Freudian/Jungian/Lacanian unprovable mythology about a woman's psyche, you will probably love this. Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (1993)

Barbara Creed is an associate professor of cinema studies in the school of fine arts at the University of Melbourne. A well-known film critic and media commentator, she has been the Age film reviewer for three years and an ABC film critic for the past decade. She is the author of The Monstrous-Feminine and the coeditor of both Body Trade and Don't Shoot Darling! Her work has been widely published in international journals such as Camera Obscura, New Formations, and Screen.

Bibliographic information