3) Subversive Bodily Acts - Judith Butler

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summary of "subversive bodily" acts from butler's gender trouble...

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Rodrigo Paramo HUSL 6317

Subversive Bodily Acts (1990)  Judith Butler Contemorar! "emini#t de$ate# o%er the meaning# o" gender lead time and again to a &ertain #en#e o" trou$le' a# i" the indetermina&! o" gender might e%entuall! &ulminate in the "ailure o"  "emini#mtrou$le i# ine%ita$le and the ta# *hat $e#t *a! to $e in it +hat haen# to the #u$,e&t and to the #ta$ilit! o" gender &ategorie# *hen the ei#temi& regime o" re#umti%e hetero#e-ualit! i# unma#ed a# that *hi&h rodu&e# and rei.e# the#e o#ten#i$le &ategorie# o"  ontolog!/

 Judith Butler# Su$%er#i%e Bodil! 2&t# outline# the relation#hi relation#hi $et*een $odie# and the #o&ietie# that &on#tru&t them 4 "or Butler' &ontemorar! theor! that #ee# to ground it#el" in the idea# o" true #e-' di#&rete gender' and #e&i.& #e-ualit! ha%e largel! mi##ed the oint/  5he! a##ume a #tati& under#tanding under#tanding o" identit! marer# marer# that ignore# the &ontingent and &on#tru&ted nature o" identit!/ Building on ou&ault# &laim that the $od! i# a lane o" in#&rition' #he highlight# $odie# a# $eing &ontinuou#l! rede.ned $! #o&ial norm#/ So&iet! (hi#tor!) &on#tru&t %alue# and meaning# through a ro&e## o" in#&rition that $egin# *ith the $od!/ 5he onl! &on#tant i# thi# ro&e## o" in#&rition and the $od! that re.gure# it/ rom here' Butler &ite# 8ar! ougla# diagno#i# that the $od! and it# limit# are ne%er merel! h!#i&al 4 though the! are e%entuall! arti&ulated a# #u&h' the! $egin a# limit# o" larger #o&ial order#/ 5hi# ro&e## o"  &on#tru&tion allo*# "or &ertain ra&ti&e# and $odie# to $e ainted a# threat# to the #o&ial order order 4 the homo#e homo#e-ua -ual' l' 2:S' 2:S' nonno nonnorm rmati ati%e %e #e-ua #e-ualit litie# ie#// 5hi# 5hi# i# e#e& e#e&ial iall! l! true true "or homo#e-ualit! and the liminal #tatu# it i# gi%en 4 $oth un civilized  and   and unnatural  unnatural / Butler then read# ;ri#te%a and #e->#e-ualit! dont line u *or to ruture under#tanding# o" the $od! not onl! do the#e $odie# di#rut &on%entional under#tanding#' the! al#o re%eal re%iou# ideal# a# $oth norm normat ati% i%el el! ! &on# &on#tr tru& u&te ted d and' and' mor more imo imort rtan antl tl!' !' .&ti .&tion onal al// Buil Bu ildi ding ng on ou&a ou&aul ult t# # under#tanding o" the $od!' Butler argue# that the #el" i# &on#tru&ted out#ide o" the $od! 4 #u$,e&ti%it! (or the #oul) i# ne%er ree-i#tent in the *a! it ha# hi#tori&all! $een e-lained/ Rather' the #u$,e&t i# de.ned $! the a&tion# that the $od! tae# a&t#' a&t#' ge#ture#' and de#ire rodu&e the eDe&t o" an internal &ore or #u$#tan&e/ Butler# under#tanding o" ethi&#' the #u$,e&t and oliti&# are &ontingent on reading the *orld through a performative len# performative len# that [email protected]# the oliti&al regulation# and di#&ilinar! ra&ti&e# *hi&h rodu&e #el%e# and #u$,e&t#/  5hu#' gender i# onl! onl! e%er the eDe&t eDe&t o" er"orman&e' er"orman&e' not a true or "al#e #tate o" $eing/ $eing/  5hi# truth i# *hat allo*# Butler to mae the arti&le# &entral &laimA that drag "ull! #u$%ert# the inner>outer di&hotom! and mo&# the notion o" true gender/ gender/ :n imitating gender' drag imli&it imli&itl! l! re%eal# re%eal# the imitati%e imitati%e #tru&ture #tru&ture o" gender gender it#el" it#el" 4 a# *ell *ell a# it# &ontingen& &ontingen&! !/ Engaging in thi# parodic er"orman&e parodic er"orman&e re%eal# the o##i$ilit! "or &ontinuou# re#igni.&ation re#igni.&ation 4 *hen original marer# are in#erted into ne* &onte-t#' the %er! notion o" originalit! i# thro*n into #eriou# ?ue#tion/ :" $odie# are $oundarie#' *e mu#t under#tand gender a# a corporeal style (an a&t)' a&t)' *hi&h i# $oth intentional  and performative and performative..  5hi# i# not an indi%i indi%idu dual al ro,e ro,e&t' &t' $ut $ut rathe ratherr a #ur%i #ur%i%a %all #trate #trateg! g! that that i# [email protected] [email protected] ed to na%ig na%igate ate throug through h &ontem &ontemor orar! ar! &ultur &ulture/ e/ 5hu#' 5hu#' Butler Butler &on&lu &on&lude# de# that that gender gender i# an identi identit! t! &reat &reated ed $! indi%idual# engaging in a “stylized repetition of repetition of acts.” 5hi# acts.”  5hi# mean# that that gender i# no longer longer

#olel! a model through *hi&h *e &an under#tand identit! a# an a&t that o&&ur# in a arti&ular temporality / :n other *ord#' a gendered #el" i# al*a!# onl! a #ur"a&e re#entation' one that &ome# into $eing a"ter a #erie# o" er"ormed and reeated a&t#/ Fender# &an $e neither true nor "al#e' neither real nor aarent' neither original nor deri%ed/ 2# &redi$le $earerer# o" tho#e attri$ute# ho*e%er' gender# &an al#o $e rendered thoroughl! and radi&all! incredible. Further Reading: Butler' Judith/ Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. Ge*
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