Module 3 Activity
THE BODY PROJECT:
BODY POLITICS, BODY POSITIVITY, BODY DIVERSITY
In Modules 1, 2, and 3, we have examined issues of gender and bodies, including media representations of gender, sexuality and heteronormativity, transgender and intersex bodies, beauty norms and consumerism, idealized bodies, and shamed bodies (including fat-shaming).
This module activity invites you to do a creative project of your choice based on the terms and concepts of this course that relate to gendered bodies and body politics. Specifically, you can create a photo essay, Instagram account, video, podcast, or work of original art or creative writing that makes an argument about how bodies are gendered, sexualized, racialized, shamed, and/or commodified in popular culture. (Note: no PowerPoint or Prezi, please.) This project is worth 100 points, or 10% of your final course grade.
Although this is a creative project, it needs to be analytical in nature. You will be making an argument: saying something about how gendered bodies are constructed and/or represented. Please be sure to draw on course concepts and readings in making your argument, though I am of course also interested in your ideas. 🙂
Please choose a topic that is specific and manageable. “Beauty” is impossible to explore in the scope of this project; so is “the sexualization of women.” You should not focus exclusively on thin, white women, but instead should examine bodies that are challenging the cultural norm. I encourage you to choose from among the following topics, or see me with your idea if you’d like to do something else:
- the body (链接到外部网站。) positivity movement (链接到外部网站。) – research it, define it, and show how it is relevant to feminism and gender studies
- how are specific fat activists or artists (such as Virgie Tovar (链接到外部网站。), Janet Mock (链接到外部网站。), or Jonquel Norwood (链接到外部网站。)) trying to change the way that bodies are normalized or shamed in mainstream culture?
- Read the magazine FabuPlus (链接到外部网站。), or the recent issue of Self Magazine featuring fat activist and model Tess Holiday (链接到外部网站。), and summarize and respond to how they are “doing” fashion and fitness differently
- SlutWalk (链接到外部网站。)(a worldwide street protest in defiance of rape culture and slut-shaming) or Take Back the Night (链接到外部网站。) (an annual march to raise awareness about gender-based violence)
- how are feminist theorists or artists (such as Audre Lorde in The Cancer Journals (链接到外部网站。), Barbara Ehrenreich in “Smile! You’ve Got Cancer,” (链接到外部网站。)or the photographer Matuschka (链接到外部网站。)) trying to change the way that breast cancer is discussed – and thereby the way that women’s bodies are discussed?
- explore the world of male makeup models (链接到外部网站。) and make an argument about how they are changing how “beauty” is gendered
- research a trans activist such as Janet Mock (链接到外部网站。) and how they are trying to change what gender can mean
Keep in mind that the body is the point of this project, so if your argument does not say anything about how bodies are gendered or represented, then you’re not on topic. 🙂
Whichever of these topics you choose, you must be clear about the purpose and argument behind the choices you make. What are your key questions? What is your argument, and how will you illustrate it? What key terms from the course will inform your project?
Please be sure to use at least 5 images and at least 500 words of text in your project. Also, please be sure that I have permission to view your Google doc, video, or Instagram!
Email me with questions or to talk to me about your ideas! 🙂