The Perversion of The Silence of the Lambs and the Dilemma of The Searchers: on Psychoanalytic “Reading”
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- Rushton, R. Psychoanal Cult Soc (2005) 10: 252. doi:10.1057/palgrave.pcs.2100041
This article examines two approaches to the study of films from the perspective of psychoanalysis. The paper argues that the psychoanalytic “reading” of films – and other cultural objects – should at all times be aware not just of the conscious and unconscious meanings present in those films, but also of the way that the unconscious thoughts of the person who is “reading” the film may influence or re-direct any straightforward interpretation. The reading of films is thus a two-way affair: a reading may be directed towards a film, but the film will also be “giving something back.” The article thus examines two psychoanalytic “readings” of films, a first that does not take into account the two-way nature of psychoanalytic reading, and a second that does.