FitzGerald L & Godfrey S (2013) Them over there: Motherhood and marginality in Shane Meadows' films. In: M Fradley, S Godfrey & M Williams (Eds) Shane Meadows: Critical essays (pp. 155-170). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
This chapter questions the use of community as a framing concept by which to understand the works of Shane Meadows. Investigating the peripheral significance of women in his these male-orientated films, Fitzgerald and Godfrey show how these films recuperate a disenfranchised masculinity.
Co-authored with Sarah Godfrey (University of East Anglia), a specialist in depictions of class in American and British film and television, this chapter brings together insights and methodologies from feminism, postfeminism, cultural studies and politics to examine the derogated, homogenised and decidedly not culturally specific representations of working class women and working class femininity in Meadows' films. Discussing the marginalisation of women in relation to claims of authenticity (a term frequently used to describe Meadows' work), Fitzgerald and Godfrey highlight a disjuncture between Meadows' position as a director whose work is understood as being decidedly invested in questions of British identity, British masculinity and the British class system, and his articulation of a homogenised, transnational discourse of femininity which elides important national and regional specificities.
This invited chapter forms part of the first book on a key contemporary British film director who has emerged as one of the most distinctive and influential creative and political voices in contemporary British cinema. It offers a comprehensive critical analysis of Meadows’ oeuvre, situating it in the context of British cinema and wider cultural and political shifts from the 1990s to the present day, as well as providing an overview of Meadows and his place within British cinema culture. Fitzgerald’s chapter contribution develops ideas first tested out in a paper entitled ‘No mom for Romeo Brass: Motherhood, Meadows and marginality’, which was delivered at the first national conference, Straight Outta Uttoxeter: Studying Shane Meadows, University of East Anglia, April 2010.