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My Fair Lady : A Voice for Change

My Fair Lady : A Voice for Change marCIe raY Introduction makeover dramas in which the central female character is transformed from "blah to beautiful" have a long tradition in cinematic history.1 The "Cinderella" fairytale of Charles Perrault and the brothers Grimm, as well as the much older creation myths from ovid's Metamorphoses, often provide source material and staple tropes for makeover films. These adaptations, focused on female beauty and romance, fashion the myth of the perfect woman and typically feature a male protagonist who helps remake an imperfect leading lady into an idealized vision of femininity. each new version of the makeover story reveals the changing standards of physical attractiveness and women's status in the cultural imaginary, and emphasizes the distance a "defective" heroine must travel to reach a dominant ideal. Producer Gabriel Pascal's film Pygmalion (1938) is just one example of this long fixation on reinventing women. It is not only indebted to George bernard Shaw's play of the same name (1914), but also to ovid's Metamorphoses.2 unlike most makeover films, this story does not recount an archetypal romance. In ovid's version of the story, the sculptor Pygmalion is so disgusted by women that he resolves to carve a flawless female out of ivory.3 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Music University of Illinois Press

My Fair Lady : A Voice for Change

American Music , Volume 32 (3) – Apr 17, 2014

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Publisher
University of Illinois Press
Copyright
Copyright © University of Illinois Press
ISSN
1945-2349
Publisher site
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Abstract

marCIe raY Introduction makeover dramas in which the central female character is transformed from "blah to beautiful" have a long tradition in cinematic history.1 The "Cinderella" fairytale of Charles Perrault and the brothers Grimm, as well as the much older creation myths from ovid's Metamorphoses, often provide source material and staple tropes for makeover films. These adaptations, focused on female beauty and romance, fashion the myth of the perfect woman and typically feature a male protagonist who helps remake an imperfect leading lady into an idealized vision of femininity. each new version of the makeover story reveals the changing standards of physical attractiveness and women's status in the cultural imaginary, and emphasizes the distance a "defective" heroine must travel to reach a dominant ideal. Producer Gabriel Pascal's film Pygmalion (1938) is just one example of this long fixation on reinventing women. It is not only indebted to George bernard Shaw's play of the same name (1914), but also to ovid's Metamorphoses.2 unlike most makeover films, this story does not recount an archetypal romance. In ovid's version of the story, the sculptor Pygmalion is so disgusted by women that he resolves to carve a flawless female out of ivory.3

Journal

American MusicUniversity of Illinois Press

Published: Apr 17, 2014

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