Fatal Attractions

Fatal Attractions : Rescripting Romance in Contemporary Literature and Film

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"Romance" is one of the most enduring of the "grand narratives". The impulse to consume those cultural constructions otherwise known as love stories is seemingly timeless and certainly insatiable. But in these post-colonial, post-modern times, how is the conventional love story faring? And what does its continuing appeal tell us about the culture in which we live? In this collection, the contributors consider the ways in which the codes and conventions of traditional romance, as a genre, are being rewritten and subverted in contemporary literature and film. Romance, it seems, is no longer an agent of cultural orthodoxy, perpetuating the institutions of monogamy, the family, heterosexuality and marriage - it can also, at least to some extent, destabilize those orthodoxies, and call them into quesstion, through burlesque, explicitly "feminist" texts, queer readings and so on. Romance, the contributors argue, is a category under stress. Can the love story - in fiction and in film - survive in an age of postmodernism, AIDS and queer theory? And if it can, what (utopian) political agenda might it serve?
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Product details

  • Paperback | 228 pages
  • 135.6 x 212.9 x 16.8mm | 331.13g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • notes, index
  • 0745313817
  • 9780745313818

Table of contents

Rescripting romance - an introduction, Lynne Pearce and Gina Wisker; Hollywood in the AIDS era - "Ghost" and "When Harry Met Sally", Maria Lauret; "Jane Eyre" in later lives - intertextual strategies in women's self-definition, Patsy Stoneman; if looks could kill - contemporary women's vampire fictions, Gina Wisker; prisons, traps and escape routes - feminist critiques of romance, Flora Alexander; essentially virtuous? Anita Brookner's "Hotel du Lac" as generic subversion, Maroula Joannou; another time, another place - the chronotope of romantic love in contemporary feminist fiction, Lynne Pearce; rewriting the love story - the reader as writer in Daphne du Maurier's "Rebecca", Judy Simons; love transforms - variations on a theme in film and soap, Phyllis Creme; Mills and Boon's temptations - sex and the single couple in the nineties, Nickianne Moody; true love in queer times - romance, suburbia and masculinity, David Oswell; the lure of abjection - sex, death and desire in "Basic Instinct", Barbara Creed; "girl meets girl" - changing approaches to the lesbian romance, Paulina Palmer; "they gotta do what they gotta do" - interrogating the contradictions and lasting pleasures of masculine romance, Derek Longhurst.
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