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ENG A11 LEC Mar 28.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Garry Leonard

ENG A11 LEC Mar 28 Real Symbolic  21 century loss of transcendental certitude Fear/desire o untying of any anchor __/ seduction o what are you going to do while you wait Reality  try to make conversation(vlandimmir and estragon)  try to fall inlove (Scottie and Madeline) _____/ secret imaginary  Scottie falls in love with Madeline o Madeline (judie) is not rlli the wife of gavin elster o Runs away from home (Kansas) o Gavin inherits the ship yard from his wife, so he wants to murder his wife o Scottie gets a note  To go drink with gavin  Is Scottie a drinker?  Drinking constantly appears in this story  Is he a struggling alcoholic (or even struggling to not be an alcoholic)  Are his problems (dizziness, vertigo) due to a problem of stuggling not to drink o Gavins plan- dress judy up, to make her look like Madeline, hire Scottie as a detective o Scottie has to follow her to figure out whats wrong with her o Madelines grandmother had been the mistress of a powerful man – cam to san fran- was picked up by a tycoon – built her a house that is now a hotel – shes buried in a church yard there- grandma commited suicide- her death anniversary and madelines birthday are coming up – gavin trys to say did grandmas ghost start interacting with her – child involved- took the child as his own – grandmother went mad because her child was taken – and commited suicide o Another life motif is where is the child between Scottie and Madeline/judie o In the process of following madeline/julie around, he gets involved in the mystery of Madeline- hes falling in love – what is falling in lve- why is it ‘falling’ in love- if you afraid of love you are acrophobic o Whats the significance of falling- im falling for you – you have to jump off the cliff – no steps to what off o Falling in love – is a bout the abyss that is the center of identity construction o It appears to bne a chance to bring to a reality the myth of the coherent image of ourselves o Love sustains the myth of our coherence o If you fall and they don’t- you’re just falling – alone- o Easier to fall in love with someone you don’t talk to (crushes) nothing destroys a crush faster than conversation o Crush – imaginery order- you imagine coherent o Talking- your trying to sustain and convert imaginery coherent into a symbolic structure (identity) o Identity is a symbolic structure to our imaginary coherent o Vertigo- constrasting shopping scene from pretty woman – confirimign that you can convert your imaginary to symbolic (falling in love while shopping)  When Scottie takes judy shopping its almost psychological rape  Hes forcing her to become Madeline  One of the amazing things is that the detective is cluel;ess- the real mastermind is gavin – that way Scottie is convinced that he is unveiling the truth  Judy goes up this tower (same as grandmother)- he follows her until vertigo hits  He ‘witnesses’  Symbols  Potency vs. impotency (he cant climb the tower- get to the top (impotency) inability to perform as a male  You need to anchor your self (patriotical law and order) – vertigo – police officer lets go of roof to try and help scotttie ( what is he holding on to ) o The man who helps- cant hold onto a man – so much anchor to a woman- there is no woman on the roof- performance of feminity – perform in a way to allow the man to feel masculine o Woman agree to mimic origin of man  In order to do that, the agree to lose their origin( judy lets go of her origin and becomes Madeline)  She makes Scottie feel potent again – masculine again  Trick to the feminine perfomarnce is that you have to do it in a way where its not obvious you are performing  Gavin waits at the top of the tower with the real (dead) Madeline, Scottie thinks he sees MJ fall (suicide) and gavin and MJ just have to wait in the tower till everyone leaves  The woman being buried is the real Madeline (perfect murder)  Gavin never gets caught – the end of this movie is similar to the beginning – this time Scottie is standing looking down into an abyss  Amazing that he gave us Scottie and judy’s indentity o Somehow judy fell in love with Scottie while performing Madeline o Scottie fell in love with Madeline that judy is playing  If something happens, I , judy, still love you o Scottie thinks hes not going to lose her  Loss of TC – cling to fake certitude that is a myth  Slip on the roof or we can be accused as a woman of being fake  Woman are being invited to perform ( cosmetics) when can you trust that the guy loves you or your image  When they start to argue- the degree to which the other person is supporting their myth of origin (?) crumbles – can crumble very fast because both feel betrayed, disappointed o The degree to which they support each others’ myth of origin /origin  Everytime Scottie sees a blonde woman he thinks its her again and is disappointed again – comatose depression – midge is trying to get him to react  Midge says you think youre alone but you rnot mothers here o Its like his parents are gavin and midge o Madeline is his way to get out of this mother-father issues o Gavin is the patriorical father o Midge is the over solicitous mother o Man finds his way out of that through falling in love o This relationship seems to solve all the past problems but new relationships are haunted by relationships of the past o Burn this old stuffed animal – otherwise it threatens your myth of coherence  They don’t conform to your prior notion of what they should be- that is why love is blind- anytime they don’t conform you become blind  In every film Hitchcock, trys to make a no one into a superstar  The girl always jumps off the building  He cant get the girl, he made her what she wants – but then she is inauthentic  The fury Scottie has for judy as he drags her up the tower he says he made you over – only he did It just like I did only better o He realizes gavin did this first and better o His fear of impotency is returning o He makes it to the top of the tower o His vertigo seems to disappear when he realizes Madeline is fake- when your deluded into believing your myth of coherence that’s when youre deluded (vertigo) o Woman can not win – either she performs or she doesn’t and becomes invisible o Judy keeps saying cant you love me as judy and hes like yes but he still trys to change her o Theres no Madeline who exists (the woman you love) , but the woman who is there (judy) still does love you o All of a sudden a nun comes – she has to leave o Nun is a crucial figure in white noise  You guys are allowed to not believe because we do o Hitchcock was raised catholic  Maybe it is a ghost story  Maybe the nun coming up the stairs (judy says oh no)  This is a movie about religion maybe and faith in god has dissaperared  We put our faith in psychiatry  What is the price of that  The beg of this movie o The title and all the credits comes out of a womans eye o We go to the movie to fall in love with the shadows o So we can feel compettant and potent during the movie o Then after the movie ends we fall off the tower o In normal movies you get what you want and in the end they do work it out o Things workout in the movie, it makes you think things workout in real life o Then you don’t understand why people keep jumping off your tower   The title of the movie comes right out of a woman's eye, followed by the swirling in the eye. So much of the movie will be about who is looking, who is seen, who controls the gaze, who is controlled by it. . .  The opening shot features a steel bar bisecting the screen. suddenly a hand comes up and grips it. As a man pulls himself up into the frame, the camera tracks back showing he is climbing up on to a rooftop. This shot of a man "climbing into the movie" is a metaphor for the viewer of the film being "drawn into" the frame. The camera moving back is letting us unedrstand the story- now I know what im watching. You don’t expect the slippage - you keep thinking your watching one thing to another. Modern life is like this – never prone to more sliping more then when you think you are right. Intolerance for incertitude make you prone to slippage. You must tolerate what you don’t know. Like Scotty, we will try and use the crations of the story to reinforc the mtyh of our own coherence.  Aware of being hopeless can give you more insight  . In a similar fashion, the director alfred Hitchcock took an unknown actress (kim novak) whom we might thinmk of as "judy", and turned her into the "Madeline" of a Hollywood star. We, like Scotty, are encouraged to respond to her, but we will "lose her", too, as soon as the movie is over.  This is similar to the dyamic in 'the balcony' where the male clents "construct" the women in the precise way taht allows them to fulfill their sense of anideal image (notice how their image in the irror is whqt they look at, with only brief glances at the girl--she is not important for who she "is" (for being Judy) but for who she can be made to seem ("Madeline"). Of course, in Vertigo, we also get to see what this feels like FOR THE WOMAN (the women in the balcony are paid and don't really care--although Carmen does note it is remarkable to be placed in this space of apparent adoration, and Chantal seems to succumb to the lure of being the ador4ed symbol of the Revolution--after she is no longer needed as a symbol, she is unceremoniously shot, or "falls from the balcony" as Judy will fall from the tower). Judy i
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