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5. Film Studies

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the state of the field of film studies with regard to scholarship that is situated at the intersection of film studies and "women of Islamic cultures". The colonial adventure film supplied some of the most popular works of the cultural form as it took shape, and these films supplied potent images and imaginaries concerning the societies of the colonized world. The representations of Muslim women, in particular, in these films, thus took on a fullness and power that was unprecedented. Feminist film theory came to its own in the mid-1970s with the work of Molly Haskell (1974), Claire Johnston (1973), and Laura Mulvey (1975), among others, opening new vistas on the study of women's representations in cinema. The general absence of a significant presence of scholarship on cinemas from Muslim majority societies within the field of feminist film studies remains an unfortunate gap.

Keywords: colonial adventure film; feminist film studies; Islamic cultures; Laura Mulvey; Molly Haskell; Muslim women



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