Rieser, K. (2001). Masculinity and monstrosity: Characterization and identification in the slasher film. Men and masculinities, 3 (4), 370-392.
Abstract: Analyzes characterization (of the monster and the “Final Girl”) and identification (of the male audience) in the slasher film. The author engages in a critical dialogue with key theories of gender in the horror film, particularly Carol Clover’s work, arguing that these films, despite their formal deviance from Hollywood (gender) formulas–such as positioning a female figure at the center of the narrative–do not usually depart from that cinema’s patriarchal signification. Indeed, most slasher films are violently misogynist and homophobic–punishing female sexuality, equating femininity with victimhood, and portraying the killer/monster as a queer figure. It is also argued that the male audience does not straightforwardly identify with the Final Girl. Instead slasher films rely on primary identification and offer empathy rather than identification. Moreover insofar as secondary identification with the female protagonist does occur its aggressive impulses are projected onto the monster. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved)