Type of Document Thesis Author McConnell, George David Author's Email Address email@example.com URN etd-04072006-141611 Title Live! Nude! Girls! Representations of Female Nudity in the Fluff Girls Burlesque, Girls Gone Wild, and Suicidegirls Degree Master of Arts Department Theatre, School of Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Mary Karen Dahl Committee Chair Carrie Sandahl Committee Member Laura Edmondson Committee Member Keywords
- Joe Francis
- Cecilia Bravo
- Wet T-Shirt Contest
- Strip Tease
- Girls Gone Wild
- Missy Suicide
- Fluffgirl Burlesque Society
Date of Defense 2006-03-28 Availability unrestricted AbstractIn the United States, performances of female nudity have a long history of transgressing and challenging socially constructed understandings of gender roles. This history stretches from burlesque performances just before and after the turn of the 20th century to the more contemporary work of performance artists like Karen Finley and Annie Sprinkle. Instead of focusing on these solo performance artists, who use their nude bodies to raise troubling questions about gender and sexuality, this thesis breaks new ground. I investigate uses of female nudity in three contemporary examples of popular performance: the Fluffgirl Burlesque Society, Girls Gone Wild, and the SuicideGirls.
By looking at these three examples and the ways they each use different mediums of representation, I explore possible answers to the following questions: Can the representation of female nudity take place from a subject rather than an objectified position? Can performing “femaleness” based in the image of the nude female body signify an ownership and display of her own sexuality? Is female nudity always only a commodity for appropriation by the male or desiring spectator? Can women intervene in an economy of sexual desire by using the very images that are the stock and trade of such an economy? Who is in the power position if a woman chooses to have the desiring gaze directed at her? In addition to investigating the answers to these questions, this thesis also explores the possibility of an ethical heterosexual male desire in relationship to representations of performed female nudity.
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