By Frances Pheasant-Kelly
American cinema abounds with movies set in prisons, asylums, hospitals and different associations. instead of orderly areas of restoration and rehabilitation, those institutional settings become abject areas of keep an eye on and repression during which grownup identification is threatened as a story impetus. Exploring the abject via concerns as different as racism, psychological disorder or the renovation of our bodies for organ donation, this ebook analyses quite a number motion pictures together with 'The Shawshank Redemption' (1994), 'Full steel Jacket' (1987) and 'Girl, Interrupted' (1999) via to cult movies corresponding to 'Carrie' (1976) and 'Bubba Ho-tep' (2002). via analysing scenes of horror and disgust in the context of abject house, Frances Pheasant-Kelly finds how threats to id appear in scenes of torture, horror and psychosexual repression and are resolved both although loss of life or via disturbing re-entry into the skin global. This readable and interesting travel of the abject within the establishment film...
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Extra resources for Abject Spaces in American Cinema. Institutional Settings, Identity and Psychoanalysis in Film
9 Maternal abjection is a particularly important facet of her work, Kristeva noting how, the abject confronts us ... with our earliest attempts to release the hold of maternal entity even before existing outside of her, thanks to the autonomy of language. 11 Kristeva’s views on the abject feminine body have elicited significant debate in film studies. One of the key theorists relevant to such discussion is Barbara Creed, who examines a number of films, mostly of the horror genre, in relation to what she terms the ‘monstrous-feminine’.
While his approach is not overtly repressive, it has parallels with Freudian psychoanalysis in that it entails an element of control. A repeated narrative in Foucault’s work is of a vital, chaotic, exciting world that is constantly under restraint. 39 Therefore, while Freud and Foucault may appear incompatible, there is common ground in the way they link control to the pathologicalization of difference. In a sense, Foucault is obsessed with the abject and uses space and hygiene as an attempt to distinguish between normal and other.
The most important element in the choice of films related to genre and type of institution. The films here represent a series of different institutional spaces and extend across various genres, ranging from horror, science fiction, melodrama and action through to the prison film. Crucially, they illustrate diverse aspects of abjection. Further, these films include a range of texts about masculinity and femininity in which abjection is generally associated with the institution as a feminized, maternal space from which a man has to escape or, on occasion, a masculinized, patriarchal space that oppresses women.
Abject Spaces in American Cinema. Institutional Settings, Identity and Psychoanalysis in Film by Frances Pheasant-Kelly