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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The nude female performer
by Stubblefield, Shannon, M.F.A., Mills College, 2014, 27; 1562505
Abstract (Summary)

A live nude female performer can occupy a powerful identity equal to a man because she willingly places herself in front of an audience. She commits to this state of profound vulnerability as a means of gaining ownership of her body that men by virtue of their power in society take for granted. The female body occupies physical space, unlike how a body image seen on a television or in a magazine does. The actuality of the live female nude creates a transformation from the purely sexualized body to an authentic female nude body. This authentic female nude body, via her control of her physicality, is a “loud” and often rejected body. The acknowledgement of her authenticity is an acknowledgement of her power and this is common ground on which the female audience member and performer can relate intersubjectively. On the surface, it seems the most effective solution to eliminating objectification and this obstruction of the female body would be to take focus away from her body. Yet paradoxically, female subjects have altered these culturally shaped identity norms of objectification through nude performance, liberating the hyper-sexualized projections attached to the female body and replacing them with symbols of innocence, creativity and power.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Murphy, Ann
School: Mills College
Department: Dance
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 53/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Dance, Womens studies, Performing Arts
Keywords: Female identification, Female subject, Intersubjectivity, Nude female performer, Sex object, Subversive women
Publication Number: 1562505
ISBN: 978-1-321-09815-0
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