Universitatea „Babeș-Bolyai” din Cluj Napoca, Facultatea de Litere
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2 / 2018
Toxic Mothers, Devoured Children – An Overview of the Maternal Imaginary in Romanian Cinema
The article explores possible connections between a maternal imaginary (i.e. elaborations of mother representations) of the Romanian cinema and the national imagery of maternal filiation (e.g. metaphors of motherland). It is the author’s contention that, in the context of growing Romanian migration and upsurging frustration with national conditions of belonging (in the social, political and economical sense), the filmic representations of mothers turn to a black, negative imaginary. This turn has happened in the last twenty years, following decades of representations of good, sacrificial, hardworking and nurturing mothers. For the last five decades, giving birth, having children, and mothering led to representations in which several ideologies regulated intimacy.
Keywords: Romanian New Wave, maternal imaginary, Cristian Mungiu, Călin Peter Netzer, Luminița Gheorghiu, “children of the Decree”