COMM 452 film noir midterm

COMM 452 film noir midterm - Jake Unger 3/16/10 COMM 452:...

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Jake Unger 3/16/10 COMM 452: Film Noir Midterm The Femme Fatale In film noir, the femme fatale (fatal woman), is a male constructed image of an irresistible woman who successfully manipulates, corrupts, and destroys men because of the desire she invokes due to her sexual prowess. The femme fatale yearns for freedom, wealth, power, or independence, and her intense sexual allure allows her to manipulate men in order to obtain these goals. The desire she invokes inevitably leads to destruction and/or death in the lives of men as they become corrupted due to the beauty of the femme fatale. Furthermore, she is representative of the enigma of male paranoia and mystery in regards to women, as she is independent and clearly disrupts the traditional patriarchy. For her disruption of the traditional male-dominated societal and social norms she must either die or be brutally reprimanded. After the World War II in the United States, there was a strong push to move women back to strictly domestic roles as they were seen as “excess labor” in a man’s workplace (Martin 203). However, women had proved they could independently function in the workplace as they had been doing throughout the war. In response, the femme fatale arose in film during this time as “masculine fantasy of sexual difference played out…as to keep them [women] in their ‘proper’ and lesser place” (Martin 205). Women who were viewed as ideal and pure were displayed as
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COMM 452 film noir midterm - Jake Unger 3/16/10 COMM 452:...

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