New Book: Beyond the Public Sphere: Film and the Feminist Imaginary

María Pía Lara’s magnificent book brings an
urgent new perspective into old debates about
the public sphere: by exploring the potential of
the current cinematic imagination, she discloses
powerful new tools for feminist critique. A mustread

Chiara Bottici

New book by María Pía Lara (UAM)

Beyond the Public Sphere: Film and the Feminist Imaginary (Northwestern University Press, 2020)


In Beyond the Public Sphere: Film and the Feminist Imaginary, the renowned philosopher and critical theorist María Pía Lara challenges the notion that the bourgeois public sphere is the most important informal institution between social and political actors and the state. Drawing on a wide range of films—including The Milk of Sorrow, Ixcanul, Wadja, The Stone of Patience, Marnie, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Talk to Her—Lara dissects cinematic images of women’s struggles and their oppression. She builds on this analysis, developing a concept of the feminist social imaginary as a broader and more complex space that provides a way of thinking through the possibilities for emancipatory social transformation in response to forms of domination perpetuated by patriarchal capitalism.

María Pía Lara is a professor of moral and political philosophy at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana in Mexico City. She is the author of a number of books, including Moral Textures: Feminist Narratives in the Public Sphere, Narrating Evil: A Postmetaphysical Theory of Reflective Judgment, and The Disclosure of Politics: Struggles Over the Semantics of Secularization.



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