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Title: Bearing witness to a whole bunch of murders : the aesthetics of perspective in the 'Friday the 13th' films
Author: Clayton, George Wickham
ISNI:       0000 0004 2741 1969
Awarding Body: University of Roehampton
Current Institution: University of Roehampton
Date of Award: 2013
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With twelve films released over the last thirty years, the Friday the 13th series has proved a popular mainstay of the slasher sub-genre of horror, in spite of negative critical reception and minimal academic engagement. The academic discourses that do address the series often frame their arguments based on socio-political function, socioeconomic platforms, psychoanalytic traditions, and cultural relevance. While there is some work that attempts to understand the generic positioning and function of the Friday the 13th films, little work has engaged with the film texts in order to understand and explain the form and structure of each instalment in the series. This thesis not only aims to explore and describe the aesthetic form of the slasher sub-genre of horror, but also to argue the central significance of perspective on the aesthetic effect of the slasher. Perspective, a term that builds upon theories of point of view and subjectivity, permeates the formal design of the slasher film. Therefore, this relationship will be the driving focus of the analysis undertaken with regards to the Friday the 13th films, which will include chapters focusing on specific uses of the camera, sound, editing, and sequences creating a narrative understanding of preceding films in the series. Following this analysis, the aesthetic development of the Friday the 13th series will be contextualised within contemporary generic trends, demonstrating to what extent this franchise is representative of the slasher, and where it proves anomalous or progressive. This will not only demonstrate the role the Friday the 13th films play within the slasher, but also how the slasher has aesthetically evolved over more than three decades. Ultimately, the relevance of this analysis and formal historicizing will be suggestive of the wider context of film studies and cinema as a whole.
Supervisor: Abbott, Stacey ; Sutton, Paul ; Chanan, Michael Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Slasher ; Horror ; Film Theory ; Friday the 13th