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Revolting Bodies: Aesthetics, Representation, and Popular Culture

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Course DatesWeeksMeeting TimesStatusInstructor(s)CRN
June 22, 2015 - August 07, 20157M, T, W, TH 1P-3POpenMajida KargboN/A

Course Description

Our bodies make us feel (un)comfortable, sublime, ridiculous, grotesque. In this course we examine how social and visual images of our bodies force us to consider our identities in socially approved ways. We employ cultural and disability studies, queer theory, science fiction, and film to ask how representations structure the way we "know" and "see" bodies. Reality television, performance art, and blogs will allow us to consider how revolting bodies can become bodies in revolt"bodies that imagine new possibilities. Students interested in queer, feminist and African American theoretical perspectives and those in health sciences are welcome.

The main objective of this course is for students to understand the importance of representations of the human body in relation to debates about sex, gender, sexuality, race, class and disability. Our understanding of ourselves and others are formed by visual images and bodily feelings that are social in origin. Deploying many methodologies (literary studies, visual culture theory, gender and sexuality studies, and disability studies) and moving across media forms (literature, television, film, and digital media), students will have a strong foundation in a number of approaches deployed by the humanities and social sciences that they will explore in more depth as college students.

Students will have a knowledge of critical concepts in discussing the body and representation, as well as be able to think critically about whether bodies are merely "natural", are socially and textually constructed, or something else entirely.

Enrollment is limited to 17.

There is no prerequisite for this course.