This article focuses on a cycle of late 1960s true crime films depicting topical mass/serial murders. It argues that the conjoined ethical and aesthetic approaches of these films were shaped within and by a complex climate of contestation as they moved from newspaper headlines to best-sellers lists to cinema screens. While this cycle was central to critical debates about screen violence during this key moment of institutional, regulatory and aesthetic transition, they have been almost entirely neglected or, at best, misunderstood. Meeting at the intersection of, and therefore falling between the gaps, of scholarship on the Gothic horror revival and New Hollywood’s violent revisionism, this cycle reversed the generational critical divisions that instigated a new era in filmmaking and criticism. Adopting a historical reception studies approach, this article challenges dominant understandings of the depiction and reception of violence and horror in this defining period.
The Gothic is the discourse which embodies the dialectic of the Enlightenment, with its potential to push the frontier of reason into the mythologized darkness. Embarking on the use of genre fiction as political discourse and finding a voice to tell a story of her generation, Carter made a major breakthrough in her career. Making use of the Gothic palimpsest, Carters Marianne leaves behind the sphere of (feminine) ‘interiority’-the psychic spaces of desire and anxiety for the (supposedly masculine) catharsis in the Other world, as a sixties heroine of sensibility. Heroes and Villains calls for the reconstruction of enlightenment at the ‘post-modern’ ruins of civilization.
The purpose of this article is to analyse the ambivalent politics of looking and discourses of gender, class and sexuality in a variety of 1960s–70s Japanese studio-made exploitation films, known as sukeban films. It first contextualises their production within a transnational and domestic shift emphasising sex and violence in film and popular culture. The article then highlights instances where the visual, narrative and discursive articulation of non-conforming femininities flips the gendered power balance, as in the sketches that satirise men’s sexual fetishes for girls. In conclusion, it suggests to understand the filmic construction of young women’s agency, and their bodily and sexual performance, in terms of a recurring modus operandi of Japanese media that ambivalently panders to and co-constitutes youth phenomena.
Regarded by fans and critics alike as the Queen of Horror, Barbara Steele stands as one of the few bona fide cult icons of the genre, whose ability to project an uncanny blend of deathliness and eroticism imbues her characters with a kind of necrophiliac appeal. Horror film scholars have tended to read Steele‘s films in feminist terms, as texts that play to our fascination with the monstrous-feminine. This article approaches them from a different standpoint – that of cinephilia studies. Steele‘s cult horror films are at their most basic level horror movies about cinephilia, presenting her as the very embodiment of the ghostly medium that cinephiles cherish. In so doing, they convert Steele into a necrophiliac fetish-object, an intoxicating fusion of death and desire. Considering Steele‘s work from this perspective reveals the fluidity of the boundary between horror and cinephilia, demonstrating that horror has something important to teach us about cinephilia and cinephilia has something important to teach us about horror.
Mercenaries are fighters who operate under special conditions. Their presence, as shadow combatants, often tends to exacerbate the violence of their enemies. That’s why the analysis focuses on the singularity of the relationship to death and ‘procedures’ concerning the corpses of their fallen comrades. As a fighter identified and engaged in landlocked areas, the mercenary’s corpse is treated according to material constraints pertaining in the 1960s. After violence on their body, and evolution towards the secret war, mercenaries favour the repatriation of the body or its disappearance. These new, painful conditions for comrades and families give birth to a collective memory fostered by commemorations.
This article examines the role of automobility in the Greek cinema of the 1960s. It focuses on the representations of the automobile’s domestication in selected films. Particular attention is paid to the technical and symbolic reconstruction of space and the redefinition of socioeconomic and gender stereotypes. The article’s conclusions concern the role of the automobile in a specific period within Greek film history, as well as its place within cinema in general and in the theoretical and material construction of what is perceived as ‘modernity’.
Given the relative lack of attention to specific TV programmes and episodes in interviews with surviving blacklistees until recently, given the relative lack of availability of 1950s and 1960s TV shows on video, on DVD or even in archives, given the relative lack of complete or reliable information on the credits of many TV series and shows, and given the sheer number of episodes (closer to a thousand than to hundred) requiring research, attention and study, the difficulties facing those interested in researching the blacklistees and TV are all the more formidable. This article begins the task of listing blacklistee‘s television credits.
In the late 1960s, Hollywood had the youth demographic in its sights. In 1969 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid proved that Westerns could appeal to this market, and sparked a cycle of youth Westerns. The cycle framework provides a new lens to refocus this group of Westerns. When the films are situated alongside the other production trends and cycles of the period, as they were in the contemporary trade discourses, they emerge as part of a short-lived strategy for financing Western films that targeted the youth market. An industrial and discursive analysis of the marketing and reception of the youth Western cycle contributes to a more nuanced understanding of the New Hollywood period.
For several years now, James Baldwin’s life, portrait, and work have enjoyed a central place in the public eye. Although social and audiovisual media have made significant contributions to Baldwin’s return to the cultural and political limelight, the circulation of his published writings remains a vital part of the author’s ubiquity. Moreover, since Baldwin’s omnipresence in bookstores transcends an American or even Anglophone context, this international and multilingual circulation contributes to Baldwin’s world literary standing, as befits the self-described “transatlantic commuter.” This article moves beyond the customary approach to Baldwin’s published success by tracing presently circulating European translations of his work. The article examines the historical developments in Baldwin’s European circulation-through-translation from the time of his death (1987) up until the present, including brief discussions of the French, Italian, and West German translations from the 1960s onward. Of special interest are the pioneering and dominant roles that French and Italian publishers have played since the late 1990s, and the acceleration in circulation that took place across the continent in the wake of the films I Am Not Your Negro and If Beale Street Could Talk. The article concludes with a few remarks on the translation strategies of several key publishers in France, Italy, Germany, and Romania.
Spurred on by Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Nickel Boys (2019), which is set in Tallahassee, FL, during the 1950s and 1960s, this essay presents a close-up look at James Baldwin’s visit to Tallahassee in May 1960. Moving between Baldwin’s writings about the South, especially “They Can’t Turn Back,” published by Mademoiselle magazine in August 1960, and subsequent writing about the movement in Tallahassee, and checking off against Whitehead’s fictional treatment, we find a lattice of silences obscuring the names and contributions of Black women. Most importantly, we find that the historic case of the rape of Betty Jean Owens in May 1959, and the subsequent trial that summer, appears neither in Baldwin’s nor Whitehead’s writing about Tallahassee at the time. This essay establishes the missing names of Black women in the places marked and unmarked by Baldwin in his work at the time, and puts the case of Betty Jean Owens on the historical map where it belongs. In so doing, we figure issues of race, gender, sex, and violence for the ways they twist together, ways suppressed in historical (and even some contemporary) writing, ways crucial to our deepening consideration of Baldwin’s work and the history which he drew upon and to which he contributed so profoundly.