Can you summarize the entire book From Reverence to Rape?  

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appletrees eNotes educator| Certified Educator

From Reverence to Rape: The Treatment of Women in the Movies is a book written by film critic Molly Haskell. It was first published in 1974, and a second edition with a chapter covering films released from 1974-1987 was published more recently. The book is mainly divided into chapters covering a entire decade of film, with chapters on The Twenties, The Thirties, and so on, with chapters also on "The Woman's Film" and "The Europeans." Haskell was a film critic for The Village Voice and later New York Magazine and Vogue. One of the main points made in the book is that despite many inroads made in women's lives, cinema in the 1970s portrayed women in increasingly negative ways, as prostitutes, victims or weaklings, for example. Haskell informs her critique with feminist theory, and reviews of the book often note the angry and bitter tone of her analysis. She considers it a terrible irony that women's equality has not been adequately represented in movies:

"Here we are today, with an unparalleled freedom of expression, and a record number of women performing, achieving, choosing to fulfill themselves, and we are insulted with the worst--the most abused, neglected, and dehumanized--screen heroines in film history."

The book was considered very groundbreaking at the time, and is still considered an important text in the scholarly fields of film studies and women's studies.

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