Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Dr. Aga Skrodzka, Committee Chair
Dr. Jillian Weise
Dr. Lindsay Thomas
By combining the works of theorists like Yi-Fu Tuan, Luce Irigaray, and Carol Clover, with the films Rosemary's Baby (Dir. Roman Polanski, 1968) and It Follows (Dir. David Robert Mitchell, 2015), I am exploring where the philosophy of space and place collides with horror film and anxiety. Women are told to fit specific roles, to serve specific purposes. Within the scope of the horror genre, the woman under scrutiny is the "final girl," a girl that Clover says will survive the film to tell her story. We use the body of the final girl as a receptacle for anxiety and fear - fear on the parts of directors, audience members, and fellow characters. In order to be a receptacle, the final girl must be made place; in horror genre, this place-making happens through rape and eventual motherhood (both actual and imagined). It is problematic to think of a woman as place, something that we seek to inhabit, yet we do it and find it comforting. Even more troubling, then, is the thought that media and society are involved in a reciprocal relationship. This thesis seeks to critique the both the utilization and the means by which we use the body of the final girl within the horror film, and the ways in which this utilization of a female body as transgressed the borders of media and infiltrated reality.
Johnson, Madison Alisa, "Woman as Place: The Utilization of the Female Body in Horror Film" (2016). All Theses. 2354.