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Theorising Art, Media and Design - Essay Example

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Theorising Art, Media and Design

It advocates their independence and their role in the society – a role which is more than that inside the household (Chodorow). This paper will discuss feminism in the context of visual culture and the means by which this particular movement was theorized and historicized in the past three centuries. Before delving into the discussion of the historiography of the femininity in the context of visual arts, it is appropriate to explain the projection of women in contemporary art by citing varying texts published by feminist writers. In particular, this research will use Amelia Jones’ book, The Feminism and Visual Culture Reader, as its primary basis for said study. Jones’ work focuses on the collates different accounts and writings concerning art, film, architecture, popular culture, new media, and other visual fields in the point of view of feminist thinkers and writers. The author describes feminism as, “... in most of its forms, proposes and demands a political and/or ethical stance towards cultural experience...” (Jones 2). She also argues that the presence of visual culture, “... is a rubric and a model of critical thinking about the world of images saturating contemporary life.” (Jones 2). ...
of critical models of reading visual imagery in visual culture and its related disciplines of art history, film theory, television studies, and the visually oriented arm of media, new media and culture studies.” (Jones 3). There is no need to explain what had been cited from the work of the author. She directly applies the leading role of such movement in contemporary forms of art and media. However well established feminism is as a major movement that advocates the emphasis of the female gender in a patriarchal society, the depiction of femininity and its degradation in some visual arts has had a lengthy discourse. According to Judith Butler in the book, Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity, “The notion of an original or primary gender identity is often parodied within the cultural practices of drag, cross-dressing and the sexual stylization of butch/femme identities. Within the feminist theory, such parodic identities have been understood to be either degrading to women...” (187). Butler makes clear that not all contemporary art can be beneficial to the cause of women empowerment. The example that she had presented gives light to the misuse of the feminist movement which had inevitably resulted to the lampooning of the feminine gender. Indeed when the ideological basis of feminism is used but the medium of expression is deformed, the outcome may cause harm to the ultimate goal of uplifting femininity as gender in the arts. If Jones depicts feminism as the major player in the context of contemporary visual arts and Butler argues that the proper expression of feminism in the mentioned media is a must, other feminist writers regard that feminism in visual arts can create liberal and complex image of the female subject. Judith Williamson ... Read More
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