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Visual culture lecture series featuring Patrice Petro, U. of Wisconsin

Visual culture lecture series - Professor Patrice Petro, the Director of the Center for International Studies and a Professor of English and Film Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, speaks on Thursday, July 26, from 5 to 8 p.m., room S-128, Science Wing.

She is the author of Joyless Streets: Women and Melodramatic Representation in Weimar Germany. Petro challenges the conventional assessment of German film history, which sees classical films as responding solely to male anxieties and fears. Exploring the address made to women in melodramatic films and in popular illustrated magazines, she shows that Weimar Germany had a commercially viable female audience, fascinated with looking at images that called traditional representations of gender into question.

Interdisciplinary in her approach, Petro interweaves archival research with recent theoretical debates to offer not merely another view of the Weimar cinema but also another way of looking at Weimar film culture. Women's modernity, she suggests, was not the same as men's modernism, and the image of the city street in film and photojournalism reveals how women responded differently from men to the political, economic, and psychic upheaval of their times.

She has also written Aftershocks of the New: Feminism and Film History, and Rethinking Global Security: Media, Popular Culture and the “War on Terror.



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