Sugar, Spice, and Everything Nice: Cinemas of Girlhood / Edition 1

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From the Wizard of Oz to Lolita, from the Heathers to the Spice Girls, images of girlhood have been projected on the silver screen in myriad ways. Whether a girl is taught that "there is no place like home" or is seeking adventure on her own terms, whether she is a seductress or a nerd, a babysitter or a murderer, films have depicted society’s problematic expectations of girls together with the dreams, anxieties, and tensions experience by girls themselves. In examining the construction of girlhood from many angles, this collection of essays not only captures the richness of meaning behind "girl films," but also explores the recent resurgence of youth-oriented cinema and the relationship of young female viewers to that medium.

The twenty essays approach to the construction of girlhood from a variety of perspectives, including reception, production, star images, and textual analyses, while exploring such topics as star power, the Riot Grrrl movement, coming of age, and loss of innocence. Among the characters given special attention are those in Gidget, Crooklyn, Titanic, Freeway and Girls Town. Written for general and academic readers, this work offers a lively, unprecedented discussion of gender in youth-oriented films.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814329184
  • Publisher: Wayne State University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2002
  • Series: Contemporary Approaches to Film and Media Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 392
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Fraces Gateward teaches courses in film and popular culture in the Program in Film and Video and the Center for Afro-American and African Studies at the University of Michigan. Her work has been published in a number of journals and anthologies. She is editor of Zhang Yimou: Interviews (2001).

Murray Pomerance is professor and chair in the department of sociology at Ryerson University. His books include Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls: Gender in Film at the end of the 20th Century (2001) and Bang Bang Shoot Shoot! Essays on Violence and Popular Culture (1998).

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 11
Introduction 13
1 Moviegoing, "Home-leaving," and the Problematic Girl Protagonist of The Wizard of Oz 25
2 "Don't understand, my own darling": The Girl Grows Up in Shadow of a Doubt 39
3 Gidget Goes Hysterical 55
4 Girls on the Edge of the Reagan Era 73
5 Sorrowful Black Death Is Not a Hot Ticket 91
6 Clueless in the Neocolonial World Order 103
7 Girlfriends and Girl Power: Female Adolescence in Contemporary U.S. Cinema 125
8 Performing Gender in Boys Don't Cry 145
9 Fille Fatale: Regulating Images of Adolescent Girls, 1962-1996 163
10 Maiden Voyage: From Edwardian Girl to Millennial Woman in Titanic 183
11 Pretty in Pink? John Hughes Reinscribes Daddy's Girl in Homes and Schools 201
12 Pleasures and Problems of the "Angry Girl" 217
13 The Nerdly Girl and Her Beautiful Sister 235
14 Maternity, Murder, and Monsters: Legends of Babysitter Horror 253
15 Bubblegum and Heavy Metal 269
16 The Pixel Visions of Sadie Benning 285
17 She's Murder: Pretty Poisons and Bad Seeds 303
18 'Til Death Do Us Part: Identity and Friendship in Heavenly Creatures 323
19 Too much of something is bad enough: Success and Excess in Spice World 343
Contributors 361
Index 365
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