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Contribution to Book


Melodrama has long been associated with emotion, frequently in a pejorative sense due to its apparent emotional excesses. Conversely, scholars have argued that the melodramatic mode expresses “forces, desires, fears which... operate in human life," for which we have “no other language” (Gledhill tool, 31,37). In this chapter I explore how emotionality serves melodrama as an alrernarive “language" precisely to express forces, desires, and fears that operate beyond cognitive or ideological explanation.

Book Title

Melodrama Unbound: Across HIstory, Media, and National Cultures

Book Publisher

Columbia University Press (partnership with De Gruyter)

Book Editor(s)

Christine Gledhill and Linda Williams




The full book can be found at

Document Version

Publisher's PDF

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