Male Gaze

Laura Mulvey's “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” (1975) was one of the first scholarly attempts to reference male gaze, the visual and controlling viewpoint associated with hegemonic masculinity and male dominations. Mulvey's pioneering work fused feminist and psychoanalytic theory with theories of film spectatorship as she examined the progression of “looks” in classical narrative cinema. In her classic model of the gaze, Mulvey considered gendered identity and “sexual looking” as elements of “woman as spectacle” for the pleasure of men (p. 10). First, she suggests that the controlling look of the camera itself is voyeuristic and male because most directors are men. Second, the looks exchanged between cinematic characters are structured so that the male characters most often look while the female characters are looked ...

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