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The cabaret's women are half-naked so much of the time that they are, as it were, clothed in their own nudity. More significantly, I think, the show often presents them very abstractly. In particular, the lighting presents this or that aspect of their bodies in such a way that they lose all particularity. They are not, in these representations, “women,” but are “woman.” I’m not saying that Frederick Wiseman's film lacks in bare breasts and bums—there’s more than enough of them to satisfy the merely lubricious.

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