Corporeal Feminism

Corporeal Feminism

My theoretical standpoint lies at the juncture of transnational feminism and interdisciplinary theory of the body, sexuality and desire while my research focuses on representation of body parts in modernist and postmodernist literature written by women. My research agenda broadly centers on analyzing representation of fragmented, distorted, disabled or incomplete anatomical parts in the modernist and postmodernist women’s literature, dance and visual art and their significance in terms of desire, sexuality, objectification and feminist affect theory.  I further intend to expand my research interest in the light of Crip studies and Medical Humanities. Medical Humanities is an emerging popular curriculum that focuses on the significance of liberal education as a way to replace egoism and sense of entitlement with a culture of empathy, respect and affction. Medical Humanities introduced me to the book Anatomy of Anatomy in Images and Words by Meryl Levin, a documentary photographer who was intrigued by the intense training of medical students who are asked to face death during the dissection of human body. After reading this book, I started exploring the politics of representation of female anatomical parts beyond the composite whole. I soon realized that my research intention is not to see the body in pieces or as fragmented but to explore how in the twentieth century, women writers have re-visioned the various body parts as more than assortment of bodily fragments: they are multivocal, composite signifiers and resist simplification. How do these anatomical signatures deploy emotions, cultural values and question such model of ideal body by constructing, deconstructing and reconstructing their meanings?

There are many stories which are not on paper. They're written in the bodies and minds of women.