Art cinema has always had an aura of the erotic, with the term being at times a euphemism for European films that were more explicit than their American counterparts. This focus on sexuality, whether buried or explicit, has meant a recurrence of the theme of rape, nearly as ubiquitous as in mainstream film.
This anthology explores the representation of rape in art cinema. Its aim is to highlight the prevalence and multiple functions of rape in this prestigious mode of filmmaking as well as to question the meaning of its ubiquity and versatility. Rape in Art Cinema takes an interdisciplinary approach, bringing together recognized figures such as historian Joanna Burke, philosopher Ann J. Cahill, and film scholars Martin Barker, Tanya Horeck and Scott Mackenzie alongside emerging voices. It is international in scope, with contributors from Canada, the U.S. and Britain coming together to investigate the representation of rape in some of cinema's most cherished films.