The ‘male gaze’ refers to “the way film reflects, reveals and even plays on the straight, socially established interpretation of sexual difference which controls images, erotic ways of looking and spectacle” (Mulvey).
More simply, the male gaze occurs when a woman character is sexualized and the audience is put into the perspective of a heterosexual man. The gaze can come in the form of a male character in the film looking a female character, or the way the camera focuses on the female character. The camera might linger on parts of the woman’s body or look her up and down, as if it were a heterosexual man staring at, and sexualizing, her.
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Keywords: the male gaze, laura mulvey