WST 4930-02 / WST 5934-02
Summer 2004, C Session
T/TH 2:00 - 5:15 Williams 320

Technological Training and Movie Showing Times, When Necessary: Tuesdays (June 29-August 3, 2004), 6-9 p.m., Williams 320

Gender, Authority, and the Politics of Representation in Science and Art
Dr. Caroline Joan (“Kay”) S. Picart

This course takes as its center the issue of authority in relation to the politics of representation, as manifested in both science and art.  These issues are pivotal to debates in contemporary feminist theory and the philosophy/sociology of science.  Conventionally, issues of feminism and science, and gender and art have been pursued as separate areas of inquiry.  What such an approach obscures, however, are the natural intersections and common themes that bind the epistemologies, politics and ethics of scientific and artistic activities.

Traditional political theory links the issue of author-ity with the entitlement to speak, and conventional modes of representation in both science and art have implicitly set up standards of who is speaking versus who listens; who dissects and who is dissected; who gazes, and who is gazed upon.  In contrast, feminist critiques have focused on destabilizing and unmasking the complex genealogies that underlie traditional assumptions concerning who may speak to/about/for whom or what.  Thus, scientific and artistic representations, as gendered and historical configurations of power rooted in specific cultural and economic contexts, constitute a particularly fertile ground for examining and re-envisaging the nature of authority, and of recognizing and redirecting the political nature of representation in science and art.

Kay is a philosopher and former molecular embryologist educated in the Philippines, England, and the U.S. In 1989, she accepted Cambridge University 's Sir Run Run Shaw International Fellowship, shifted from neuro-embryology to Philosophy of Science, and finished at the top of her class in 1991 as the Wolfson Prize Winner. After a year as a teacher of English and as a professional artist in South Korea , she finished a Ph.D. in Philosophy with doctoral minors in Comparative Literature, and Aesthetics and Criticism, at the Pennsylvania State University in 1996. She is the author of Resentment and “the Feminine” in Nietzsche's Politico-Aesthetics (Penn State University Press, 1999); Thomas Mann and Friedrich Nietzsche: Eroticism, Death, Music and Laughter (Kluwer Academic Press, 1999); co-authored with Frank Smoot, The Frankenstein Film Sourcebook (Greenwood Press); The Cinematic Rebirths of Frankenstein: Universal, Hammer and Beyond (Praeger, 2001); Remaking the Frankenstein Myth on Film: Between Laughter and Horror (State University of New York Press, 2003); Inside Notes from the Outside (contracted and in press, Lexington Press/Rowman and Littlefield Group, July 2003; forthcoming in 2004); The Holocaust Film Sourcebook (Fiction, Documentary, Propaganda) 2 Volumes. (Westport , CT and London , England : Praeger, in press as of June 2003). Currently, she is an Associate Professor of English and Courtesy Associate Professor of Law at Florida State University.

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Last updated: March 2004