CCAE's Gonson Daytime Lecture: What Does Marnie "Mean"? Cinema, Psychoanalysis, and the Problem of Interpretation

Wednesday, October 30, 2019 1:00pm

Michael Frank | Ph.D. Cornell University

For a variety of reasons, both historical and biographical, the films of Alfred Hitchcock have probably been subjected to more analysis and interpretation than those of any other filmmaker. Of his films, Marnie (1964) may be the most problematic. For these reasons, it becomes a very useful text to use as an illustration of the process of making meaning. After screening a short sequence from the film, audience members will be invited to offer and defend their understanding or interpretation. We’ll then look at some expert interpretations to see how they develop, what they are based on, and finally to determine whether they derive from the film or are imposed on it by willful critics. Our goal will be not only to get a richer understanding of Marnie and Hitchcock, but also to sort through some of the complexities involved in all acts of interpretation.

About the Gonson Daytime Lectures:

This talk is part of Cambridge Center for Adult Education's Gonson Daytime Lectures. Stimulate your mind mid-day with $5 lunchtime lectures—with complimentary coffee and tea—on topics in everything from history and current events, to culture and personal wellness. To learn more about these lectures, visit


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Cambridge Center for Adult Education
56 Brattle St.
Cambridge, MA 02138