The predator-victim ambivalence of the female monster in Wolwedans in die Skemer (2012)
Foster, Wendy Elizabeth
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This dissertation explores how the concepts of ambivalence, horror, monsters and mise-en-scène can be used to interpret the ambivalent predator-monster/victim relationship of the characters Sonja Daneel, Adele and Maggie Joubert from the film Wolwedans in die Skemer (2012). In doing so, this dissertation investigates how Noël Carroll’s The Philosophy of Horror or Paradoxes of the Heart (1990) and Jeffery Cohen's Monster Theory (1996) can be used as a theoretical foundation to analyse and interpret the characters Sonja, Adele and Maggie. This research argues that within the horror genre, viewers are presented with two classic characters, namely that of the monster (often male) and the victim (often female), each with their own set of characteristics and traits that set them apart. However, I postulate that in Wolwedans in die Skemer these characteristics and traits are often blurred into one character, giving rise to a monster-victim ambivalence. This study also investigates the connection that the characters Sonja, Adele and Maggie have in relation to werewolves and to the characters of the Little Girl and the Wolf from the Red Riding Hood tales. Jones (2012:140) proposes that the wolf is the projection of her own inner predator - this suggests that the Little Girl and the Wolf can be seen as one character, a combination of victim and predator. Red Riding Hood can possibly be interpreted as recognising her inner self as the Wolf or a werewolf. A werewolf is a person who has been transformed, by force of will and desire, from a human (victim) into a predatory and monstrous wolf-like state. When women are werewolves, the traditional coding of horror - monster as male, victim as female, no longer applies. The "female werewolves" of Wolwedans in die Skemer each become, in some way, Little Red Riding Hood, Wolf, and Woodcutter fused into one. By analysing the characters Sonja, Adele and Maggie through the lens of the monster and victim with regards to the concepts of ambivalence, horror, and miseen- scène, it becomes clear that the roles of the monster and the victim in Wolwedans in die Skemer dissolve into one body, creating an ambivalent fluctuation between the two.
- Humanities