After birth : abjection and maternal subjectivity in Svea Josephy's "Confinement"

Steyn, Christine (2013-12)

Thesis (MA)-- Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: In this thesis I investigate the radical reframing of maternal representation in the photographic series by Cape Town-based artist Svea Josephy (b. 1969), entitled Confinement 2005-ongoing. Using Julia Kristeva’s theorisation of the maternal body’s relation to abjection, as well as its imperative to the remodelling of the relationship between the corporeal and the cultural, I explore how Josephy’s images explicitly engage with the Kristevan abject in order to disrupt cultural inscriptions of maternity and ‘motherhood’. I contend that Confinement situates Josephy’s experience of ‘becoming-mother’ against the dominant discourses of maternity and birth, and thereby uses the maternal subject as a means to interrogate broader issues of gender and identity.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: In hierdie tesis ondersoek ek die radikale herberaming van die moederfiguur in Confinement (2005 tot op hede) – ‘n fotoreeks van die Kaapse kunstenaar Svea Josephy (geb. 1969). Julia Kristeva se teorieë oor die moederlike liggaam, en in besonder die moederliggaam se verhouding tot abjeksie, word aangewend om die verband tussen die liggaamlike en die kulturele te herbedink. Ek ondersoek hoe hierdie fotoreeks Kristeva se konsep van die abjekte benut, ten einde kulturele voorskriftelikheid oor moederskap en 'ma-wees' te ontwrig. Ek argumenteer dat Confinement Josephy se ondervinding van 'wordend-moederskap’ die dominante diskoerse van moederskap en geboorte uitdaag, en sodoende die moederlike subjek gebruik om breër aspekte rondom geslag en identiteit te bevraagteken.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/85724
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