Smart Chicks on Screen: Representing Women's Intellect in Film and Television - Film and History (Paperback)
  • Smart Chicks on Screen: Representing Women's Intellect in Film and Television - Film and History (Paperback)
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Smart Chicks on Screen: Representing Women's Intellect in Film and Television - Film and History (Paperback)

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£22.95
Paperback 256 Pages / Published: 19/07/2016
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While women have long been featured in leading roles in film and television, the intellectual depictions of female characters in these mediums are out of line with reality. Women continue to be marginalized for their choices, overshadowed by men, and judged by their bodies. In fact, the intelligence of women is rarely the focus of television or film narratives, and on the rare occasion when smart women are showcased, their portrayals are undermined by socially awkward behavior or their intimate relationships are doomed to perpetual failure. While Hollywood claims to offer a different, more evolved look at women, these movies and shows often just repackage old character types that still downplay the intelligence and savvy of women. In Smart Chicks on Screen: Representing Women's Intellect in Film and Television, Laura Mattoon D'Amore brings together an impressive array of scholarship that interrogates the portrayal of females on television and in movies. Among the questions that the volume seeks to answer are: In what ways are women in film and television limited, or ostracized, by their intelligence? How do female roles reinforce standards of beauty, submissiveness, and silence over intellect, problem solving, and leadership? Are there women in film and television who are intelligent without also being objectified? The thirteen essays by international, interdisciplinary scholars offer a wide range of perspectives, examining the connections-and disconnections-between beauty and brains in film and television. Smart Chicks on Screen will be of interest to scholars not only of film and television but of women's studies, reception studies, and cultural history, as well.

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 9781442275621
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 386 g
Dimensions: 223 x 153 x 18 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
D'Amore has put together a smart book on an important subject: the ways in which women of depth and intelligence are presented on the screen, or in short, the ways in which all women should be presented on the screen-i.e., with respect and understanding. Hollywood's insulting list of shorthand tropes for supposed stupidity, a list 'dumb blonde' surely tops, gets a thorough going over in this collection of detailed, sharply observed essays by such scholars as Sheri Chinen Biesen (on women in film noir), Stefania Marghitu (on the character of Peggy Olson in the television series Mad Men), Stephen Duncan (on Judy Holliday's participation in the film Born Yesterday), and Amanda Stone (on the female characters in the television sitcom Big Bang Theory), to name just a few of the 13 superb essays collected in this volume. D'Amore has done an excellent job with this volume, which bids fair to become a required resource for any course on women in film and television. In essays that are both insightful and delightful, the various contributors offer an entirely new approach to women as they are portrayed on the big and small screen. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers. * CHOICE *
Sometimes a title says it all. Smart Chicks on Screen: Representing Women's Intellect in Film and Television contains 13 essays about the portrayal of women's intelligence in two of the most popular entertainment mediums: movies and TV. The book, edited by Laura Mattoon D'Amore, does a reasonable job of collecting numerous interesting and easy-to-read essays. The scope ranges from one about female intellectual images in film noir to another which discusses how Hollywood stereotypes blended with reality for actress Judy Holliday. It should be pointed out though that this book should not be considered comprehensive but rather a somewhat focused compilation. For example, four of the essays address specific movies, film genres, or actresses from the 1950s. Six of the essays discuss either specific television shows or TV actresses from the last 10 years or so. While Smart Chicks on Screen may not have a wide diversity of essays in terms of eras (such as 1960s television or 1970s film) what does make this book unique is its focus on women's intellect in recent television. Currently, there are not many books that talk about these issues related to recent television shows such as Mad Men, Big Bang Theory, and Girls. This edited book is recommended for academic libraries especially ones with programs in gender studies, women's studies, or film studies. * American Reference Books Annual *
This anthology is likely to appeal to psychologists who teach gender courses and especially those with a media focus. It powerfully describes the edgy and precarious cultural image of the brainy female, and as such, this collection will serve as a lively counterpoint to the substantial psychological literature on body objectification. It will also literally open up to view a whole new way that gender culturally reproduces itself on big and little screens. * PsycCRITIQUES *
Taken individually, these essays are quite interesting. They all analyze outstanding female characters that fight against stereotypes of women in general, as well as on the small screen, where physical appearance often takes precedence over intellectual capacity. (Translated from French) * Communication *

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