Abstract

Most scholars focus on the ambiguous meaning of the birds in Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 film The Birds, but this avian threat is little more than a MacGuffin, a catalyst used to further the film's real narrative. Rather than being a supernatural thriller, The Birds actually represents a dark exploration of the modern American Gothic: although the birds indeed prove a physical danger to Melanie's safety, she is ultimately destroyed as an independent subject by the imposing power of the Brenner family, a patriarchal structure metonymically represented by the ancestral house and its looming portrait of Frank Brenner.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1948-2833
Print ISSN
1948-2825
Pages
pp. 135-147
Launched on MUSE
2011-11-05
Open Access
No
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