Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Noreen Barnes


Mumbai is currently one of the most prolific and lucrative film centers in the world. Its production of the "Bollywood" popular film has attracted billions in audience members outside the nation of India, many of whom do not belong to Indian culture in the Diaspora. The significance of this influence draws from the cross-cultural borrowings increasingly present in Bollywood cinema. The advent of Western investment in the production center has coincided with the diversification of the standard Bollywood film from "masala" musical to more genre specific action, horror and even romantic comedy musical. Within this genre expansion, a nod to a classic—and specifically Western—cinema form has occurred. By borrowing the Femme Fatale from Film Noir and recreating her as the City Siren, Bollywood has achieved liberation for the heroine and from cultural emasculation in one. In this liberation, Bollywood has taken the Western implication of Eastern femininity and used a Western film form to turn that implication on its head. They have declared that the East may be masculine or feminine, easily utilizing either trait, as it is now fluent in both.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008