Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg


Further settings

Login for editors

Elmnaz Shahbali Gargari

Elmnaz Shahbali Gargari


Project: Semiotization of visual art in cinema

Elmnaz Shahbali is a PhD candidate at the Graduate School “Society and  Culture in Motion” and at the School of Philology, Communication Studies and Music of the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg.

This study attempts to look into lesbian subjectivity in narrative cinema and the visual elements utilized to construct it. Visibility or subjectivity of the female/lesbian body in mainstream cinema has always relied on cinematic techniques in screening the female body which was mainly for the sake of visual pleasure for the male voyeur. Given the history of lesbian image in queer mainstream cinema, this study attempts to answer the following questions: How does the twenty-first-century mainstream queer cinema portray lesbian desire? How is lesbian subjectivity constructed within mainstream cinematic conventions? In answering these questions, this study relies on cinematic aesthetics and techniques in screening lesbian relationships in narrative cinema. Lesbian subjectivity in the corpus refers to the active visibility and presence of lesbian bodies where women are aware of their desire and act upon it. Their subjective lesbianism, hence, is constructed through their point of view/gaze, the space they are situated in, the costumes, their bodies interact with, and the dominant colors that are used in costume design, the mise-en-scene, or in the entire scenes.