Twins and the ‘Crisis of Masculinity’: Patterns in Body Horror Cinema

  • Juliana de Nooy


In the decade preceding the revival of wicked twin sister films discussed in Chapter 3, we start to find another recurrent pattern in film, this time involving brothers, but not just any twin brothers. From the early 1980s until the mid-1990s, conjoined twins (once known as ‘Siamese’ twins due to the celebrity of the nineteenth-century brothers Chang and Eng) repeatedly appear in the horror genre. This in itself is not surprising, given the history of their depiction as monsters of one sort or another. What is surprising is the insistent way in which the brother story is used to tell a mother story. The brothers’ bodies are shown to be umbilically connected, and the twin relation substitutes for another relation dating from the womb: a maternal one.


Male Body Contemporary Literature Male Twin Maternal Attachment Twin Sister 
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Copyright information

© Juliana de Nooy 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juliana de Nooy
    • 1
  1. 1.University of QueenslandAustralia

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