“The Birth and Death of a Professional Wrestling Alter-Ego: Takahara Hidekazu's Gamushara and the Loss of a Transgressive Identity.”

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Japanese filmmaker Takahara Hidekazu's film Gamushara (2015), portrays joshi puroresu (female professional wrestling) star Yasukawa Act working through the trauma of sexual abuse through the spectacular world of professional wrestling. Shortly before the film’s release, Yasukawa was involved in what the Japanese media labeled the "Ghastly Match," wherein she had her orbital bone shattered in the ring. Takahara followed Yasukawa over the course of a year, tracking her recovery as well as her sudden retirement due to injury. The ensuing long form documentary was included on the film’s home video release and offers a unique portrait of a woman holding on to her spectacular, transgressive identity before letting it die. The cycle offers a portrait of the birth and death of an identity, built upon the receiving and inflicting of violence, at the point of healing and asks: what strength is lost within this process? What freedom is gained at the loss of an alter
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-231
JournalJapanese Language and Literature
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2019

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