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“It could just as well be my body”: A posthumanist and phenomenological study of the becomings of an embodied female subject and her experiences of fitting and misfitting in relation to cosmetic body modifications
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, The Department of Gender Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis is a phenomenological study that has been carried out via two semi-structured interviews with an -  in conventional ways of categorising - 22 years old white, heterosexual, and middleclass Swedish woman, referred to as “Andrea”. The thesis aims to explore the becomings of Andrea in connection with cosmetic body modifications and her experiences in relation to this of fitting and misfitting, which are related to the dis/ability system. The aim of this thesis has also been to situate her as an embodied female subject in an intersectional context, in addition to her own experiences, as multiple social categorizations intra-act in the creation of dis/ability. The thesis takes its point of departure in Rosi Braidotti’s theorization of nomadic subjectivity and employs her notion of subjectivity as a negotiation between desire and power, with the goal of analysing the affirmative potential of cosmetic body modifications, as well as being critical towards them and their effects. Rosemarie Garland-Thomson’s concepts of fitting/misfitting are used in order to analyse the intra-actions between body and environment as well as how cosmetic body modifications affect the fit and/or misfit of Andrea.  Sara Ahmed’s notion of orientation has been employed in relation to this, with the aim of showing how beauty, whiteness, femininity, and economic wealth are produced and sustained. In the thesis it is analysed how Andrea, in complex ways desires molarity at the same time as she actively resists “fixed” positionings of her. Andrea contributes to a deconstruction of the fixity of molar identity as her resistance disrupts the flow of expected behaviors - something which creates moments of imperceptibility. The thesis furthermore argues that Andrea uses cosmetic body modifications as an affirmative deconstruction of power in addition to it being a force that drives her towards the desired molarity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 83 p.
Keyword [en]
Femininity, nomadic subject, fitting/misfitting, cosmetic body modifications, dis/ability, whiteness, becoming, resistance, beauty
National Category
Other Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-107044ISRN: LIU-TEMA G/GSIC2-A—14/004—SEOAI: diva2:721389
Subject / course
Gender Studies - Intersectionality and Change, Two Year
2014-05-26, Parnassos, Linköping, 09:15 (English)
Available from: 2014-06-05 Created: 2014-06-04 Last updated: 2014-06-05Bibliographically approved

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Master's thesis(1299 kB)205 downloads
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Viktorsson Blom, Linnéa
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