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Fragmented bodies: Towards a feminist analysis of visual and verbal language in early surrealist poetry and art

Patterson, Jennifer Jane; (1994) Fragmented bodies: Towards a feminist analysis of visual and verbal language in early surrealist poetry and art. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The thesis identifies the violent process of fragmentation inherent in the surrealist image with the politics of a fragmentation of female presence through the imposition of externalised gendered textuality. It exposes patriarchal domination of the structures of knowledge with those of quest and uses interdisciplinary information to foreground the structures of control upon which such authority is based. The opening section examines three dream texts, contextualised by their dedicatory inscription to de Chirico. An analysis of visual and verbal language and common themes demonstrates positions of authority in the text with regard to function. The second and third sections continue work from the previous section by detailing the nature and history of the labyrinth and myth reference as conceptual affirmations of patriarchal ancestry, situating Breton's quest within the tradition of the masculine heroic. The section on anorexia examines female presence as an anorexic body denied suitable 'food' in cultural history with which to nourish herself. The final section discusses the politics of the representation of a disfigured feminine presence as a pornographic stereotypical production. All sections inscribe the necessity for presence in determining positions and the need for a process of interdisciplinary self-education to rethink and recover presence from its absence in textual alienation.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Fragmented bodies: Towards a feminist analysis of visual and verbal language in early surrealist poetry and art
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Language, literature and linguistics; Social sciences; Communication and the arts; Art; Feminist analysis; Poetry; Surrealist
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10106657
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