Radical Bodies: The Gendered Gaze in Photographic art – a dissertation.


The female gaze is becoming an increasingly popular term to use when describing work by female artists. This essay is an attempt to clarify concepts of the gendered gaze from a contemporary queer feminist perspective.

In light of the popularisation of the expression, ‘female gaze’ seems to have become synonymous to ‘woman artist’, something which is problematised in this piece. In the age of post-binary, is there still reason to gender the gaze? Contemporary and historic female and gender non-conforming artists who use photography as medium are compared and analysed according to theories based on Laura Mulvey’s essay Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, which established the term ‘male gaze’, and queer feminist theories around gender and identity as performative acts. 

The design of the handmade book is referencing classic photography publications, with the Bookmania title (digital version of the typeface re-popularised in 1975 – the same year as the release of Mulvey's essay and the originator of the discussion about the gendered gaze). 

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