Peeling the Body. How can art practice utilize the experience of medical events to consider the implications for the living human being of notions of the posthuman? How can this process affect an understanding of the positions of the subject / medical object within the western medical tradition and, in so doing, suggest a more empowered subject?
University of Southampton, Winchester School of Art,
Video (QuickTime) Yvonne_Jones_Phd_Reel_WSA,_University_of_Southampton._April___May_2010__#A1BF.mov
This practice based research focuses on events of the body, using the participating observer- researcher's experiences of medical events undertaken by her within a western medical environment to investigate her living existence as a 'unit', an 'experiencing corporeal body'. The project addresses a sharp awareness of body experienced by the researcher. It investigates this body in terms of the literal posthuman associated with Moravec, alongside the theoretical posthuman associated with Hayles where the 'defining characteristics involve the construction of subjectivity'. Using action research as the methodology and video installation as practice the project considers the position of the researcher in relationship to the medics, a situation of subject / object. With the female participating researcher as a given it becomes relevant to reference ideas from the ideals of feminism and to consider the question 'are women human?' The project produces evidence of change in the relationship of subject / object specific to this research when the researcher actively engages with attributes of the posthuman and it demonstrates how an altered emerging subject resulted from this engagement. There is a movement for the researcher from a liberal humanist subject to an emerging posthuman subject, an empowering and emancipating change.
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