Male Wombs: The Automaton and Techno-Nurturance in Hugo
Based on an examination of automata, puppetry, and space in Martin Scorsese’s film Hugo, this chapter argues that the film creates a male womb grounded in techno-culture, from which the child Hugo is able to engage with both the industrial and creative elements of masculinity. Hugo makes this space his own, and in it, he transforms his father’s automaton from a clockwork machine to a puppet and, in doing so, begins creative construction of his own identity and future path. By restoring the small mechanical man while reframing it from his clockmaker father’s industrial and technological context to his own nascent theatrical and creative context, Hugo both reinforces his link to his father’s lineage and transforms the relational and creative potential of the masculine world.
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