Date of Award

2005

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts Honours

School

School of Communications and Arts

Faculty

Faculty of Communications and Creative Industries

First Advisor

Nicola Kaye

Abstract

The position being explored within this dissertation is that feminism has been deemed 'passe' within contemporary western popular culture. The research wishes to counteract this overriding negative impression of feminism, which extends through from popular culture, into the institutions of academia, and beyond, into the gallery context. Female artists are often subjected to gender based readings of their artwork such as 'feminine' or 'feminist', which serve as a way of dismissing the importance of their work. Labelling work feminine involves similar implications as work labelled feminist - both can be seen as negative, which in turn can render the work of women artists ineffectual. I would suggest that the unpopular position of feminism places not only feminist, but female arts practitioners in a position of having little market value, and consequently affects the showing of those works. The dissertation will explore these notions, and will look at ways of 're-visiting' the site of feminism through multi-valent and subversive practices in order to address and possibly reinvigorate its position within a contemporary western context.

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