Date of Award

Spring 4-6-2017

Document Type

Distinction Paper

Degree Name

English Literary Studies-BA




Dr. Karen Steigman

First Committee Member

Dr. Patricia Frick

Second Committee Member

Dr. Jonathan DeCoster


Film Studies, Film Analysis, Spectatorship, Gone Girl

Subject Categories

Film and Media Studies


This essay evaluates and analyses the tropes and conventions of classical narrative cinema, particularly its tropes and conventions concerning women and the female character. I incorporate film studies spectatorship and apparatus theories in order to assess the impact of these tropes and conventions on the female spectator, and use Gone Girl as a base point for working through these ideological effects, as well as deconstructing how they work inside the structure of narrative film itself. I was inspired by the way that film moves me to investigate spectatorship for my final paper, and feminist film theory drove me to seek out a film such as Gone Girl that might explore what it means to consider the history of women in classical narrative film.