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University of Minnesota Press
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The Future of an Illusion was first published in 1989. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

The Future of an Illusion documents the pivotal role Constance Penley has played in the development of feminist film theory. Penley analyzes the primary movements that have shaped the field: the conjunction of feminism, film theory, and psychoanalysis, and the inherent debates surrounding the politics of women and representation. These debates center on the position of women in the classical Hollywood narrative, the construction of the spectator's desire in pornography and eroticism, and the implicitly male bias in psychoanalytically oriented film theory. Essential to anyone studying the sexual policies of representation, The Future of an Illusion ranges from avant-garde films to video, popular cinema, television, literature, and critical and cultural theory.

Constance Penley is associate professor of English and film studies at the University of Rochester. A co-editor of the journal Camera Obscura,she is the editor of Feminism and Film Theory.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. xi-xx
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  1. Feminism and the Avant-Garde
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. 1. The Avant-Garde and Its Imaginary
  2. pp. 3-30
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  1. 2. The Avant-Garde: Histories and Theories
  2. pp. 31-38
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  1. Feminism and Film Theory
  2. pp. 39-40
  1. 3. "A Certain Refusal of Difference": Feminism and Film Theory
  2. pp. 41-56
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  1. 4. Feminism, Film Theory, and the Bachelor Machines
  2. pp. 57-80
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  1. Feminism and Femininity in Godard
  2. pp. 81-82
  1. 5. Pornography, Eroticism (on Every Man for Himself)
  2. pp. 83-92
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  1. 6. Les Enfants de la Patrie (on France/Tour/Detour/Two Children)
  2. pp. 93-118
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  1. Sexual Difference in Popular Culture
  2. pp. 119-120
  1. 7. Time Travel, Primal Scene, and the Critical Dystopia (on The Terminator and La Jetée)
  2. pp. 121-140
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  1. 8. The Cabinet of Dr. Pee-wee: Consumerism and Sexual Terror
  2. pp. 141-162
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  1. Feminism and Pedagogy
  2. pp. 163-164
  1. 9. Teaching in Your Sleep: Feminism and Psychoanalysis
  2. pp. 165-184
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 185-202
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 203-208
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  1. About the Author
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