|dc.description.abstract||This thesis explores the links between ideology, stardom, nationality
and the everyday. It argues that as France underwent rapid economic
expansion and technical modernisation in the 1950s, everyday life was
subsequently rendered `unfamiliar' whilst simultaneously retaining its banal
quotidian nature or `familiarity' - i.e. it became `uncanny'. It thus became an
object of intense critical inquiry and there was also a resulting object-fetishisation
within mass culture.
The introductory chapter argues that in a climate of urbanisation, a
new `leisure' culture and the explosion of the mass media (women's
magazines, news and picture magazines such as L'Express and Paris-Match,
American cinema, the launch of Cahiers du cinema, the beginnings of
television) the American female star became newly visible in this `uncanny'
everyday existence. Her fetishised body thus became a privileged space for
expressing the processes of Americanisation and modernisation in France.
Each empirical chapter takes an aspect of how modernity effects the body
(cleanliness, spatial positioning, clothing) and then explores in detail the
different ways these attributes were inflected in representations of the female
American star in France and her French equivalent.
My thesis thus engages with the ways in which cinematic
representation effects the experience of and behaviour within everyday life,
and how cultural discourses regulate both the individual and that national
body. It closely examines Edgar Morin's writings on the mass media and also
uses established theorists such as Henri Lefebvre in a new cinematic context.
It also challenges the ways in which star studies generally concentrates on the
star in their own culture in order to address stardom as an international
phenomenon. It concludes that the presence of the female American star in
France enabled the ideological management of the contradictory construction
of femininity at this time.||en_US