Special issue of “Women & Performance: A Journal of Feminist Theory” released, edited by Uri McMillan
Uri McMillan has edited a special issue of Women & Performance: a journal of feminist theory, which has just been released. The special issue is titled “Surface Aesthetics: Race, Performance, and Play.” Surface has emerged recently as a key word across a variety of disciplines including art history, literary studies, cinema studies, and critical race theory. Attention to surface, these scholars argue, foils binary schemes — interior and exterior, essence versus covering, a superficial surface and a fleshy invisible depth — while also gesturing toward the emergence of alternative forms of representation and personhood. In this special issue, scholars practice queer and feminist approaches to surface aesthetics as an aesthetic medium, performance practice, and perceptive mode for pondering alternative visions of the social. Through this focus, surface aesthetics signals how artists and performers deploy the concept as an embodied praxis and artistic strategy to foil the gaze and reframe how bodies are consumed and comprehended. Surface aesthetics becomes a powerful, if counter-intuitive strategy for evading the gaze and escaping its grasp in a world that often demands transparency, readability, and legibility, especially for racialized subjects.
The following link gives further information on the journal, with access to Uri McMillan’s introduction to the issue and accompanying essays: