© 2010

The Femme Fatale: Images, Histories, Contexts

  • Helen Hanson
  • Catherine O’Rawe

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Introduction: ‘Cherchez la femme’

    1. Helen Hanson, Catherine O’Rawe
      Pages 1-8
  3. Ecoutez la Femme: Hear/Here Difference

    1. Griselda Pollock
      Pages 9-32
  4. Literary and Visual Archetypes

  5. Film Stars

  6. Femmes Fatales in European and World Cinemas

  7. Hollywood

About this book


These essays trace the femme fatale across literature, visual culture and cinema, exploring the ways in which fatal femininity has been imagined in different cultural contexts and historical epochs, and moving from mythical women such as Eve, Medusa and the Sirens via historical figures such as Mata Hari to fatal women in contemporary cinema.


cinema culture film gender Hollywood Visual Culture women world cinema

Editors and affiliations

  • Helen Hanson
    • 1
  • Catherine O’Rawe
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of EnglishUniversity of ExeterUK
  2. 2.University of BristolUK

About the editors

MELANIE BELL Lecturer in Film at Newcastle University, UK ANN DAVIES Senior Lecturer in Spanish at Newcastle University, UK KAREN L. EDWARDS Senior Lecturer in Renaissance Literature at the University of Exeter, UK JULIE GROSSMAN Professor of English and Communication and Film Studies at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, New York, USA SUSAN HAYWARD Professor of Cinema Studies at the University of Exeter, UK OLGA KOURELOU PhD student at King's College London, UK JOHN L. MARAMBIO Professor of Spanish and Linguistics at the University of San Diego, California, USA STEVE NEALE Professor of Film Studies at Exeter University, UK GRISELDA POLLOCK Professor of Social and Critical Histories of Art at the University of Leeds, UK JOY RAMIREZ PhD Comparative Literature, has taught Italian literature and film at the University of Colorado, the Colorado College and Vanderbilt University, USA MARCIE RINKA taught most recently the University of San Diego, USA JESS SULLY MPhil in Comparative Literature and History of Art at Goldsmiths College, University of London, UK ROSIE WHITE Senior Lecturer in English at Northumbria University, UK MARY WOOD Professor of European Cinema at Birkbeck, University of London, UK

Bibliographic information


'These bracing essays offer many fresh insights into the well-known trope of the femme fatale, a subject that has received much recent critical attention, but seldom with the skill and perception that characterizes this volume. [...] An excellent book for women's studies, film noir classes, or any course that studies the female protagonist in film history. [...] Highly recommended.' - G. A. Foster, Choice