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Doing Women's Film HistoryReframing Cinemas, Past and Future$
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Julia Knight and Christine Gledhill

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039683

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039683.001.0001

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Hollywood Transgressor or Hollywood Transvestite?

Hollywood Transgressor or Hollywood Transvestite?

The Reception of Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker

Chapter:
(p.166) Chapter 11 Hollywood Transgressor or Hollywood Transvestite?
Source:
Doing Women's Film History
Author(s):

Katarzyna Paszkiewicz

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252039683.003.0013

This chapter examines the discursive circulation of Kathryn Bigelow's 2008 film The Hurt Locker and the debates that broke out about the suppression of gender in her 2010 Academy Award acceptance speech. It considers how the success of The Hurt Locker and the varied responses provoked by Bigelow's receipt of the Best Director Oscar has renewed scholarly and critical interest in women's filmmaking and the position of women directors within the predominantly male Hollywood industry. In her piece titled “Kathryn Bigelow: The Absentee Feminist,” Susan G. Cole accused Bigelow of making no reference to the significance of her accomplishment for feminism. According to Christina Lane, Bigelow seems quite conscious of feminist politics and willing to engage with feminism, but she remains ambivalent about labeling her films in terms of gender politics. This chapter considers how Bigelow's work puts into tension the conjunction of women's filmmaking, gender, film genre, and feminism, something dramatized by her nomination for the Best Director Oscar for The Hurt Locker in 2010.

Keywords:   genre, Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker, Academy Award, Hollywood, feminism, feminist politics, gender politics, women's filmmaking, women directors

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