Friday, May 22, 2009

"slasHERS" reading list

I would like to take this opportunity to assure all of you that I know what I'm doing, no matter how erratic it may currently seem.  That said, I'd like to briefly map out my latest train of thought.

It's no secret that everything will be filed away under the umbrella thesis of addressing ART v. PORN v. CENSORSHIP in a feminist critique of mainstream culture.  The "easiest" way to go about the subject matter(s) at hand was to begin by breaking everything down into three main categories: ART v. PORN; ART v. CENSORSHIP; and PORN v. CENSORSHIP.  Granted, it's become increasingly clear that several topics breach my self-designated pigeon-holes, I'd still like to pretend this is an efficient way of filing everything.

Currently, I'm working on ART v. CENSORSHIP: more specifically, a portion titled "SlasHERS," which remains dedicated to addressing Sexuality and Censorship in Horror films.  For months, I've been slowly softening my brain and traumatizing myself with Sunday morning rape scene montages and daily intakes of wretched remakes.  I'm still enjoying myself far too much, given the circumstances.  I also continue to accept interviewees for my "SlasHERS" questionnaire, and I advocate for the promotion of this particular project above all others (for now).  

Before delving too deeply into the history of women in film, or any of my more particular, newfound interests, I thought it proper to read up on the social context of the horror film.  Nothing is ever this simply, however.  My horror-centric research has remained true to its purpose, in examining:

_A Brief history on horror films, leading into why the genre is simultaneously so popular and so taboo (how films have mirrored cultural shifts, what the genre says about us as viewers/does it say anything?, what the current and future state of horrors look like...)
_Girls & Boys v. Death: *Gender in Horror *The History/context of a Final Girl *how boys v. girls are preyed upon as victims *how boys v. girls kill
_Technicalities (camerawork, conventions, "the norms of the abnormal"...)
_The Inescapable Sensuality of Death in Horror
_Exploring Artistic License: *namely, in rape revenge cinema (how much "should" be shown) *censorship in horror *overview of censorship in film
_How Controversial Ads Effect the Horror Experience
_Comedy in Horror


I have also begun developing a side-story on quirkier particulars through: 

(MisSinEma- a brief on the history of women in Hollywood)

_Hair Die: How Color Effects Well-being and Perceived Personality in Film
_Feminine Agency, Villainy, and Power: through shades of darkness (film noir, over-exposed Hollywood, and most importantly, horror)

More on this to come.

My summer reading list is about five miles long at this point, but my top priorities are:
  • Complicated Women: Sex and Power in Pre-Code Hollywood written by Mick LaSalle

  • Pre-Code Hollywood: Sex, Immorality, and Insurrection in American Cinema written by Thomas Doherty

  • The Book of Film Noir edited by Ian Cameron

  • Dark Romance: Sexuality in the Horror Film written by David J. Hogan

  • Horror Film: Creating and Marketing Terror written by Steffen Hantke

  • The Monster Show: A Cultural History of Horror written by David J. Skal

No comments: