The Body and its Representations: Uncanny Embodiments of Modernity

By Marija R. Krtolica.

Published by The International Journal of Arts Theory and History

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In this paper, I am investigating the body as an area of the discourse, a site of the multiplicity of events, an object of transference—a space where wills and powers become activated, the historical realities set in motion, and endowed with meanings. I have encountered two types of historical narratives investigating the artistic responses taking form of the grotesque, uncanny, and surreal handling of the body. The first type takes form of the first-person account, and relies on retelling, describing, and elucidating the psycho-physical realities. The second type is told from the point of view of the observing subject. It presupposes clear subject/object division. Through the second type, the attempt is put forward to comprehend the perceived body by giving it unity together with symbolic relevance, and by classifying the multiplicity of perceptual information into categorical groupings that lead towards the understanding of the particular as a segment of the general pattern. Rather than looking into these two types of narratives as enclosed unities, these paper examines “zones of intensity”, and perceptible ambiguities occurring through their representational activation.

Keywords: The Body, Conceptual Framing, Power of Representation, Modernity, Ideals, Displacement, Rational and Irrational

The International Journal of Arts Theory and History, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp.31-42. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 317.378KB).

Marija R. Krtolica

Writer, Translator, Performer, Contributor for Orchestra Magazine, New York City, New York, USA

Marija Krtolica holds a MA in performance studies from NYU and a MFA in choreography from UC Davis. Her movement research revolves around the conceptual knowledge and the artistic practices arising from the experiences of the body, (de)construction of the identity of the performer, and historicity of the elusive performance occurrences. In her practice and theoretical work, she investigates potentials for poetic articulations and critical responses to the present situation. She is a contributor for the Orchestra Dance publication in Belgrade. She has published work in the Journal of the Arts in Society.