Misfit sisters : screen horror as female rites of passage by Sue Short; Palgrave Connect (Online service)

By Sue Short; Palgrave Connect (Online service)

How are stories akin to 'Cinderella', 'Red using Hood' and 'Bluebeard' referenced and revised in glossy monitor horror? What goals encourage lady protagonists, and what hindrances do they come upon? If those are cautionary stories for the twenty first century, what do they let us know approximately gender roles and expectancies, romantic goals and offended needs? Misfit Sisters breaks new floor in comparing how fresh horror texts articulate a feminine ceremony of passage, uncovering thematic parallels that replace many cautionary matters present in fairy stories of the prior, fairly in caution opposed to predatory males, treacherous women, and unsatisfied relatives events. through targeting girls suffering to outlive a variety of perils, examples together with Carrie and Carrie II, The Craft, Ginger Snaps, the Scream trilogy, Buffy: the Vampire Slayer, What Lies underneath, The present, the hoop movies and darkish Water are each one proven to supply modern coming-of-age narratives, with lady identification, aspirations, and employer duly tested. learn more... Preface -- creation -- Telling stories: Fairy stories and feminine Rites of Passage Narratives -- intercourse and the ultimate lady: Surviving the Slasher -- Maternal Monsters and Motherly Mentors: Failed Initiations in Carrie and Carrie II -- Misfit Sisters: girl Kinship and contention within the Craft and Ginger Snaps -- battling Demons: Buffy, religion, Willow and the Forces of excellent and Evil -- Demeter's Daughters: Wronged ladies and the mummy Avenger -- end -- Bibliography -- Filmography -- Index

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Sample text

Nevertheless, it remains the case that fairy tales reveal contradictory feelings towards marriage, with tales of brutish husbands who are never redeemed and alliances that are equated with death. If such tales reflect a fearful attitude towards sex this is not simply born of the repression Bettelheim suggests, but actual conditions in which the high frequency of deaths in childbirth meant that the association of marriage with living ‘happily ever after’ was already a fantastical premise for women, on health grounds alone.

This has allowed certain assumptions to be tested, particularly as horror has similarly adapted to suit changing times, as the emergence of the heroic female (and the ‘maternal’ ideals invested in such figures) exemplifies. Just as young women take a central role in the best-known fairy tales, undergoing specific trials, including the loss of a parent or being tormented by enemies, contemporary horror also prioritises a female protagonist who is threatened in some way. However, rather than 36 Misfit Sisters wait for a fairy godmother, handy woodsman, or group of benevolent dwarves for assistance, she must find qualities within herself to survive.

The high number of deaths in childbirth a few centuries ago not only meant that women could expect only a slim chance of survival if they became pregnant, it also greatly limited the possibility that anyone would ever know their own mother. Mother–daughter relations are thus skewered via circumstances that help to explain the many stepmothers that feature in the fairy tale, with second wives made responsible for their predecessor’s children, and 34 Misfit Sisters bitter rivalries often occurring as a consequence.

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