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The Carnal Hand and Fetishism in Wong Kar-wai's The Hand

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This article will look specifically into the representation of the carnal hand and the fetishized hand in Wong Kar-wai's The Hand (2004) in relation to the induction of sexual desire and its fulfillment. The first part of this article is to bring up my observation on the differences between the male and female hand in the short film. The second part of this article will depart from the carnal hand and move to the discussion on various observable fetishes, which include the gloves, the cheongsam, and ultimately the hand itself. Furthermore, by using Freud's idea from his 1927 essay "Fetishism," I am going to suggest that the hand could be considered a substitute of the male's penis in the short film.
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Keywords: Freud; The hand; Wong Kar-wai; cheongsam; fetish; sexual desire

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2008

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  • Asian Cinema is a seminal journal, which has been published since 1995 by the Asian Cinema Studies Society under the stewardship of Professor John Lent. From 2012 Asian Cinema will be published by Intellect as part of our Film Studies journal portfolio. The journal currently publishes a variety of scholarly material - including research articles, interviews, book and film reviews and bibliographies - on all forms and aspects of Asian cinema. The journal's broad aim is to advance understanding and knowledge of the rich traditions of the various Asian cinemas, thereby making an invaluable contribution to the field of Film Studies in general.
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