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Women in British Film in the 1950s 12 Jan 2010
Raising a Riot (1955) directed by Wendy Toye. The still shows Kenneth More and Ronald Squire. Courtesy of Steve Chibnall
Challenging the view that British cinema in this era was complacent and conservative in its depiction of women

Britain in the 1950s is characterised as a time when women were housewives and devoted mothers and this is reflected in British film that is usually written off as a period of dullness and trivial roles for women. Melanie Bell, Lecturer in film at Newcastle University, has re-examined this period of British film and argues that it is far more complex than previously given credit for, that many films reflect the social unease and anxiety about gender roles and femininity current at the time. She’ll be talking to Jane about her findings and the films from that period.
"Femininity in the Frame: Women and 1950s British Popular Cinema" by Melanie Bell is published by I B Tauris ISBN 978 1 84855 159 7

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