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Screening TortureMedia Representations of State Terror and Political Domination$
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Fabiola Fernandez Salek

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780231153591

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231153591.001.0001

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The Art of Photogenic Torture

The Art of Photogenic Torture

Chapter:
(p.93) 5 The Art of Photogenic Torture
Source:
Screening Torture
Author(s):

Phil Carney

Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231153591.003.0006

This chapter explores the dynamics of sexual power and desire and how these can lead to murder and torture by focusing on the films Psycho and Peeping Tom. Photographic spectacle had progressively expanded since its first stirrings in the mid-nineteenth century. One important turning point was the decade of the 1920s, when a truly mass cinematic culture coincided with both the appearances of news and fashion magazines and the increasing popularity of portable snapshot cameras. Another turning point was the moment which proliferated the image world of television, youth consumerism, fashion, and pop music, and which was accompanied by further developments in camera technology enabling even faster, more portable cameras. Out of this world emerged a new class of professional photographers and a photography that no longer deferred to the world in its lens. This chapter examines photogenic torture in Psycho and Peeping Tom in relation to violent fantasies of psychoanalysis.

Keywords:   sexual power, desire, murder, torture, film, Psycho, Peeping Tom, photographic spectacle, photography, photogenic torture

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