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Screening Twilight: Critical Approaches to a Cinematic Phenomenon

Screening Twilight: Critical Approaches to a Cinematic Phenomenon

Edited by: Wickham Clayton, Sarah Harman

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The Twilight saga, a series of five films adapted from Stephanie Meyer's four vampire novels, has been a sensation, both at the box office and through the attention it has won from its predominantly teenaged fans. This series has also been the subject of criticism and sometimes derision - often from critics and on occasion even from fans. However, it also offers rich opportunities for analytic and critical attention, which the contributors to Screening Twilight demonstrate with energy and style. Through examining Twilight, the book unpacks how this popular group of films work as cinematic texts, what they have to say about cinema and culture today, and how fans may seek to re-read or subvert these messages. The chapters addressTwilight in the context of the vampire and myth, in terms of genre and reception, identity, gender and sexuality, and through re-viewing the series fandom. Screening Twilight is also a revelation of how a popular cinematic phenomenon like Twilight rewards close attention from contemporary critical scholars of cinema and culture.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 | Mute Monsters and Vocal [Fan] Critics: Genre and Reception

Guilty Pleasures: Twilight, snark and ironic fandom
Francesca Haig

'Cue the Shrieking Virgins'?: The Critical Reception of the Twilight Saga
Mark Jankovich

The Twilight Saga: Genre and Reception
Nia Edwards-Behi

Chapter 2 | Werewolves, Lions and Lambs: Creating and Subverting the Myth

Why Twilight Sucks And Edward Doesn’t: Contemporary Vampires and the Sentimental Tradition
Judith Kohlenberger

The Lore of the Wild
Dr Caroline Ruddell

Northwest Small Town Gothic: Location and Space in the Twilight Films
Dr Ian Conrich

Chapter 3 | Romancing the Tomb: Gender and Sexuality

My distaste for Forks’: Twilight, oral gratification and self-denial
Ruth O’Donnell

Of Masochistic Lions and Stupid Lambs: The Ambiguous Nature of Sexuality and Sexual Awakening in Twilight
Marion Rana

'Venus in Fangs': Negotiating Masochism in Twilight
Mark Adams

Chapter 4 | The Politics of Pallor: Post-colonialism and Racial Whiteness

The Cullens: The Mimicry of the Post-Colonial Vampire
Simon Bacon

Racial Whiteness and Twilight
Ewan Kirkland

Chapter 5 | Slash and Burn: Deviating Fandom and Re-writing the Text

Twilight’s Queer Communities: Family and Fandom
R. Justin Hunt

Projected Interactivity and All Human Twilight Fanfic
Brigid Cherry

Normal Female Interest in Vampires and Werewolves Bonking: Slash and the Reconstruction of Meaning
Bethan Jones


Author Info

Wickham Clayton's completed PhD thesis for Roehampton University is on the aesthetics of the Friday the 13th film franchise and he has contributed to several edited collections. Sarah Harman is researching the role of the masochistic female body in paracinema at Brunel University.


‘Harman and Clayton have gathered together a dynamic mix of writers who tackle the series in all its complexities […] This book is a must-read.’
Stacey Abbot, Reader in Film and Television Studies, University of Roehampton

Screening Twilight […] examines not only the texts but also how fans and critics have responded to them and it opens up a lively discussion of the cultural significance of this new twist in the vampire tale. In short, this is a terrific book.’
Milly Williams, Senior Lecturer in Film and TV Studies, Brunel University

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
Series: International Library of the Moving Image

ISBN: 9781780766669
Publication Date: 28 May 2014
Number of Pages: 240
Height: 234
Width: 156
Illustrations: 25 bw integrated

ISBN: 9781780766652
Publication Date: 28 May 2014
Number of Pages: 240
Height: 234
Width: 156
Illustrations: 25 bw integrated

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