Laura Mulvey and the " male gaze "
Laura Mulvey is a British feminist film theorist , she was born on August the 15th 1941 and is currently working as a professor of film and media studies at Birkbeck , university of London . Laura coined the term " male gaze " in 1975 , she believes that film audiences have to view characters from the perspective of a heterosexual male .
Features of the male gaze
The camera lingers on the curves of the female body , and events which occur to women are presented largely in the contents of a mans reaction to these events . The male gaze relegates women to the status of objects , the female viewer must experience the narrative secondarily , by identification with the male .
Use of the "male gaze" in everyday life
Some theorists have noted the sexualizing of the female body even in situations where female sexiness has nothing to do with the everyday product that is being advertised . Many of the Lynx adverts highlight the " male gaze "! theory as they use the sexualisation of the female body to entice the men into buying the product and lead them to thinking that in using this product they would attract these type of women , and that's what the " male gaze " theory is about .
Criticism of Mulvey and the gaze theory
Laura Mulvey and the theory were criticised as many people argued that some females enjoy being looked at e.g. beauty pageants .
Also another argument could be that the gaze can be directed at people of the same gender for many reasons , not all to do with sexualisation , such as in comparison to body image and clothing .
Here are a few examples of how women can be objectified in music magazine front covers .
The women on the magazine covers above are enhanced to look appealing in order to catch the " male gaze " which encourages the men to buy the magazine , to have ownership of the women and see more photos of them inside . i picked the second magazine cover image to highlight the way in which music magazines have started to lose what the main purpose of the magazine genre is and trying to relate the male audience by using female actresses that are not even related to the music industry .
Although above there is an NME magazine which challenges the stereotypical girl that is usually seen on the front cover of music magazines . Beth Ditto is showing that women don't have to be necessarily attractive to be on a magazine front cover . This suggests that NME has stuck to the ain purpose of a music magazine , and not strayed off in the direction of rolling stones by objectifying women to ensure the male audience .