For individual discussions, you will generally be required to post a response of at least 200 words to a topic of your choice. Each prompt includes introductory explanation plus severalquestions. Each topic response should focus on a relevant issue you wish to examine and should make a thoughtful, well-developed argument. Close reading and use of quotation is encouraged. Use parenthetical page or electronic location numbers for citation, ie. (148). Before responding to the prompts, read prior posts, especially any that have been highlighted by the instructor. If particular questions have already been answered satisfactorily, choose other questions to address. Strive to avoid producing repetitive responses; instead, try to bring something new to the conversation to keep it moving forward.
Discussion of the film Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956).
The abject is similar to the uncanny and comes from the psychoanalytic theory of Julia Kristeva, building on Freud, but focussing more on the child’s relation to the mother. According to Kristeva, as the infant develops, the mother becomes the original other, the first not-me by which the infant becomes an individual separate from the world. This splitting off from the mother and and the world is a primal loss, but also enables the creation of the self. The attraction of returning to the smothering embrace of the mother, of returning to oneness with the world, persists but, since it would lead to the extinction of the self, is violently rejected. Kristeva argues that the boundaries of the self and the individuality of identity must be constantly reasserted. The abject is that which threatens these boundaries of the self; that which disturbs identity, system, order; that which does not respect borders, positions, rules; that which is in-between, ambiguous, composite, hybrid. The abject produces both fascination and revulsion. The feeling of abjection is produced by that which undermines the integrity of the self and the body: maternity, orality (feeding and pre-verbal communication) and other primitive elements, as well as blood, vomit, and corpses.
What makes the pod people in Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) abject?