The Female Gaze

Women have been influential in film since the earliest days of the medium. While the term “male gaze” depicts the influence of the male perspective, author Alicia Malone takes on exploring the female gaze, highlighting the ideas, thoughts, and views of women connected to filmmaking. Through her pertinent and much-needed examination of the female gaze, readers can discover and celebrate the accomplishments of female directors.

Malone’s The Female Gaze: Essential Movies Made by Women acknowledges films from the past and present as well as the impactful female filmmakers throughout film history. In this book, readers can learn about how female directors shaped films and the film industry, their advancements, and the many challenges that women faced throughout Hollywood history. The essays in this work are written by Malone and other female film critics, ultimately creating a guide to learning about the stories and enjoying the works of female filmmakers.

This book offers a broad array of notable films made by women, stemming from classic to contemporary Hollywood. As a classic film fan, my favorite installments were the essays about The Consequences of Feminism (1906) and Dance, Girl, Dance (1940) by far, but I did enjoy reading about more contemporary films that were new to me. This book succeeded in exposing me to the works of female filmmakers with whom I was unfamiliar and gave me a sense of appreciation for their works. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking to broaden their knowledge regarding the impact of women in film.

The Female Gaze: Essential Movies Made by Women is available for purchase via Mango Publishing.

About Annette Bochenek

Dr. Annette Bochenek of Chicago, Illinois, is an avid scholar of Hollywood’s Golden Age. She manages the Hometowns to Hollywood blog, in which she writes about her trips exploring the legacies and hometowns of Golden Age stars. Annette also hosts the “Hometowns to Hollywood” film series throughout the Chicago area. She has been featured on Turner Classic Movies and is the president of TCM Backlot’s Chicago chapter. In addition to writing for TCM Backlot, she also writes for Classic Movie Hub, Silent Film Quarterly, Nostalgia Digest, and Chicago Art Deco Society Magazine.
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