Gender and intimate relationships
in The cultural politics of contemporary Hollywood film
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In Part II of this book, we turn our attention from state–citizen relations to citizen-to-citizen political relationalities. Here, we explore movies that foreground more intimate forms of power relations in the private realm, focusing on gender relations, sexuality, and associated identity categories. In chapter 7, our focus is on gender. Hollywood’s ‘patriarchal legacy’ continues in the virtual exclusion of women from key creative roles, and in the derogation of ‘chick flicks’ – namely, movies supposed to appeal to women. In addition, we identify myths reiterated in romantic movies. Like fear films, romance films are rarely viewed as ‘political’. However, they are gendered and gendering – that is, they both reflect and produce gendered power relations.

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