Title page for ETD etd-08252011-120930

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Hubbard, Kristen Michelle
Author's Email Address khubba4@lsu.edu
URN etd-08252011-120930
Title Sexo asimétrico: el pensamiento no dicotómico del cuerpo a partir de la sexualización del Otro (sobre algunas fotos de María Zorzon y Gabriela Liffschitz)
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Foreign Languages & Literatures
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Martins, Laura Committee Chair
Heneghan, Dorota Committee Member
Morris, Andrea Committee Member
  • photography
  • body
  • dichotomy
  • sexualization
  • Other
  • María Zorzon
  • Gabriela Liffschitz
  • Elizabeth Grosz
Date of Defense 2011-08-05
Availability unrestricted
Each body has certain cultural values attached to it regarding the way in which it should perform in public. The body is marked by dichotomous thinking (masculine/feminine, healthy/sick, sacred/degraded, artistic/pornographic, etc.) that dictates its presentation in visual culture. In Volatile Bodies: Toward a Corporeal Feminism, Elizabeth Grosz states the importance of non-dichotomous thinking for feminist and gender studies scholars and gives guidelines to deconstruct these hegemonic dualities. The purpose of this thesis is to show how the eroticization of the body of Other, in accordance with Grosz’s guidelines, can be useful in upsetting taken-for-granted social roles thus leading to non-dichotomous thinking of the body. The non-ideal but erotic/eroticized body cannot faithfully or consistently adhere to either the positive or negative side of the dichotomy since the two sides are both explicitly presented and contested concurrently. A (strategic) sexualization of the body of Other troubles both cultural and ‘natural’ notions of what the body ‘should be’. The body of Other refers to any body that transgresses the contemporary views of a positive body image (healthy, whole, beautiful, youthful, etc.); and the sexualized Other refers to that transgressive body that takes on a contemporary meaning of what is thought to be erotic or sexual.

This thesis explores 6 photographs from contemporary Argentine photographers, Gabriela Liffschitz and María Zorzon and attempts to reveal conflicts about the dominant class’ thinking of the body and the injurious consequences of its implementation into popular visual culture. In this case the sexualized Others are simultaneously sacred and degraded (for various social reasons): the mother’s body, the tattooed body, and the sick body. These bodies in some way all exhibit the qualities that Grosz enumerates and effectively defeat notions of nature/culture, active/passive, etc. to create distinct sexual bodies that do not depend on the pre-established norms of order and purity to be considered legitimate.

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