Men, Women, and Chain Saws
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Men, Women, and Chain Saws

Gender in the Modern Horror Film - Updated Edition

Carol J. Clover

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eBook - PDF

Men, Women, and Chain Saws

Gender in the Modern Horror Film - Updated Edition

Carol J. Clover

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About This Book

From its first publication in 1992, Men, Women, and Chain Saws has offered a groundbreaking perspective on the creativity and influence of horror cinema since the mid-1970s. Investigating the popularity of the low-budget tradition, Carol Clover looks in particular at slasher, occult, and rape-revenge films. Although such movies have been traditionally understood as offering only sadistic pleasures to their mostly male audiences, Clover demonstrates that they align spectators not with the male tormentor, but with the females tormented‚ÄĒnotably the slasher movie's "final girls"‚ÄĒas they endure fear and degradation before rising to save themselves. The lesson was not lost on the mainstream industry, which was soon turning out the formula in well-made thrillers.Including a new preface by the author, this Princeton Classics edition is a definitive work that has found an avid readership from students of film theory to major Hollywood filmmakers.

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6
4
C
H
A
P
T
E
R
O
N
E
pocrisy 
in 
religion 
or 
government."65 
And 
Tania 
Modleski 
rests 
her 
case 
against 
the 
Frankfurt 
School-derived 
critique 
of 
mass 
culture 
on 
the 
evidence 
of 
the 
slasher, 
which 
does 
not
propose 
a 
spurious 
har-
mony; 
does 
not
promote 
the 
"specious 
good" 
(but 
indeed 
often 
ex-
poses 
and 
attacks 
it); 
does 
not
ply 
the 
mechanisms 
of 
identification, 
narrative 
continuity, 
and 
closure 
to 
provide 
the 
sort 
of 
narrative 
plea-
sure 
constitutive 
of 
the 
dominant 
ideology.66 
One 
is 
deeply 
reluctant 
to 
make 
progressive 
claims 
for 
a 
body 
of 
cinema 
as 
spectacularly 
nasty 
toward 
women 
as 
the 
slasher 
film 
is, 
but 
the 
fact 
is 
that 
the 
slasher 
does, 
in 
its 
own 
perverse 
way 
and 
for 
better 
or 
worse, 
con-
stitute 
a 
visible 
adjustment 
in 
the 
terms 
of 
gender 
representations. 
That 
it 
is 
an 
adjustment 
largely 
on 
the 
male 
side, 
appearing 
at 
the 
furthest 
possible 
remove 
from 
the 
quarters 
of 
theory 
and 
showing 
signs 
of 
trickling 
upward, 
is 
of 
no 
small 
interest 
in 
the 
study 
of 
pop-
ular 
culture.67
65 
Vale 
and 
Juno, 
Incredibly 
Strange 
Films,
p. 
5.
66 
Tania 
Modleski, 
"The 
Terror 
of 
Pleasure," 
pp. 
155-66.
67 
The 
upward 
trickle 
has 
become 
something 
of 
a 
flood 
since 
this 
essay 
was 
first
published 
in 
1987. 
See 
the 
Afterword, 
below.

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