Re: the post below…

class is never over. great link. and have a tremendous break.JB 


December 16, 2007 at 1:53 am Leave a comment

The State of the Family

I know class is over but this is an awesome link to check out dealing with family and kinship ties and the State.

Happy holidays.

December 14, 2007 at 4:06 am Leave a comment

final project — Ashlee

The title of my presentation is Girls Gone Wild:From Freud to Andrea Dworkin and what I did was anaylze Freud’s ideal of sexuality and penis envy and Andrea Dworkins theory of intercourse, and realted them to the linear spectrum of sexual politics. What I wanted to portray is that although Freud and Dworkin have contrasting views on sexuality and intercourse, their ideals play a role in the incestuous sexual politics of modern day society, especially with this rise in the new raunch culture of women. In response to the new rise, Freud may say that it is okay for women to act this way, because of “penis envy”, every women wants a penis because it represents power. In conclusion I found that Freud and Dworkin carried the same ideal of sexual politics it is a mechanical pattern of sexual relations, which revovles around male erection, male penetration, and male orgasm. And with this common theme found throughtout their work they conceputualize the framework involving the state andsexual politics.My artifacts:The Hite Report on Female SexualityIntercourseFemale Chauvinist Pigs

December 6, 2007 at 12:18 am Leave a comment


Handout: Overview for Feminist Theory



Section One: Antigone: Becoming States and States of Becoming




Ontology and Epistemology (states of becoming; states of becoming)


Incest: laws and states; political economies of sex


Performativity and Performance


Reproduction and recognition




“Liberal Humanism”


“Psychoanalytic Criticism”


Feminist responses:


Judith Butler:


Judith Butler: “Is Kinship Always Already Heterosexual?”

“…I do not mean to resolve this dilemma in favor of one or the other but to develop a critical practice that is mindful of both. I want to maintain that legitimation is double-edged: it is crucial that, politically, we lay claim to intelligibility and recognizability; and it is crucial, politically, that we maintain a critical and transformative relation to the norms that govern what will and will not count as an intelligible and recognizable alliance and kinship” (117)


Gayle Rubin




Hedwig and the Angry Inch:  How does Hedwig bring into play the “state/States” of gender/sex?; Founding myths and performance; “….there was a wall erected between in the city of Berlin….Hedwig is like that wall….”




Section Two: Huckleberry Finn: Automation and Animation: Re-thinking the intersections of race/sex/gender


Automation: Taylorism, Fordism


Animation: gesture; “surfaces”; embodied defiance


Irony: Reading between possibility and limitation (finitude); James Cone: tragedy and transformation encountered through difficult and complex surfaces: skin; symbols; stereotypes


The “obscene cut” in Twain; Jim at the cut between automation and animation


Reading and race




Fred Moten: “Black Mo’nin’ In the Sound of the Photograph”: Performative writing; “a poetic that makes possible a semantics of the anguished cry…”

“Blackness is an ongoing performance of encounter: rupture, collision, and passionate response.”


“…the nature of photography and our experience of photography… that mode of semiotic objectification and inquiry which privileges the analytic-interpretative reduction of phonic materiality and/or meaning over something like mimetic improvisation of and with that materiality that moves in excess of meaning.”


“The cut”: rupture and collision




“Post-structuralism and Deconstruction”

“Feminist Criticism”




 Art/performances of Kara Walker : How might we think about Moten’s “cut” in relation to her work?   Where do the “surfaces” of race/sex/gender come together in her work?  The significance of irony.



Section three: Passing: in/on/through/with




Modern/postmodern Blackness (sex/gender)


Performance and performativity (once again)


Whose history?


Raced/gendered/sexed “looks”


Authority and states: “socio-political machinery”; “subjective territory”; “transversal acts”


bell hooks: The postmodern critique of “identity,” though relevant for renewed black liberation struggle, is often posed in ways that are problematic. Given a pervasive politic of white supremacy which seeks to prevent the formation of radical black subjectivity, we cannot cavalierly dismiss a concern with identity politics. Any critic exploring the radical potential of postmodernism as it relates to racial difference and racial domination would need to consider the implications of a critique of identity for oppressed groups. Many of us are struggling to find new strategies of resistance. We must engage decolonization as a critical practice if we are to have meaningful chances of survival even as we must simultaneously cope with the loss of political grounding which made radical activism more possible. I am thinking here about the postmodernist critique of essentialism as it pertains to the construction of “identity” as one example.


Reynolds: “subjunctive spaces” – “what if”/ “as if” – between subjective territory and transversal territory




Paris is Burning:  Authorship? What conceptual machinery is reproduced?  What kinds of transversal spaces are made possible?  Postmodern blackness?

November 26, 2007 at 4:19 pm Leave a comment

Nation article about Kara Walker

Hey y’all–

Found this in The Nation today.  I was really intrigued by Kara Walker and thought you might like to see it, though I have some unresolved feelings about it myself.


November 23, 2007 at 10:47 pm Leave a comment

artifacts for “exoticism”*%3AIE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7ADBS&q=mata+hari

November 14, 2007 at 6:31 pm Leave a comment

Final Essay/Project

File version in menu above.

Feminist Theory
Final Essay: Projects/Presentations

The next assignment has two components:

1) A final essay of 8-10 pages in response to one of the following options:

a) A critical essay that explores a theme or concept we have looked at in class. For example, you might write a paper structured around a specific argument or claim on “representations of race and animation.” In this case, you might work with Huck Finn, one other animation example (historical or contemporary) and one or two additional critical texts (one of which might be something we read in class).

b) A critical essay that explores one or two fictional texts we have read in relation to a theme or idea. For example, “Passing: Antigone and Passing.” Again you would want to draw on some critical texts or ideas we have worked on in class and, if possible, one additional critical text drawn from outside research.

c) A critical essay structured around a reading of a performance or artifact. An example: a focused look at two or three media representations of Katrina that draws on one or two critical ideas and texts.

d) A performance, art object, or creative piece of your own making structured in response to one of the concepts or ideas discussed in class. NB: in this case you STILL must undertake an approx. 8 page artist statement that functions as a critical essay.

e) Some other topic or interest that you talk with me about beforehand.

2) The project should have some intermediary product associated with it in addition to the final write up. This could take the form of a small video, a performance, or an oral presentation on research undertaken. You will do presentations on your final work in the final class sessions listed below.


You will write an abstract in class on your project on November 26h

Presentations will be scheduled for the weeks of November 28th- December 5th

Draft of 4-5 pages of final essay due on December 5th

The final 8+-page write-up is due the last day of finals week, Thursday, December 13th

November 8, 2007 at 6:33 pm Leave a comment

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