Writing and reading queerly: Foucault’s aesthetics of existence and queer self-making

Baker, Dallas J. (2015) Writing and reading queerly: Foucault’s aesthetics of existence and queer self-making. TEXT: Journal of Writing and Writing Courses, 19 (Special Issue No 31). pp. 1-14. ISSN 1327-9556

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Michel Foucault advocated an ongoing assembly and disassembly of subjectivity that constituted a kind of self-bricolage; a making and re-making of subjectivity that he saw as an aesthetic struggle towards an artistic ideal. Foucault described this process as an ethics of the self. The purpose of this transformative self-bricolage is to make philosophy a ‘way of life’. One of the examples Foucault gave of a technique used in such an ethics of the self – implemented to produce a desired or altered/transformed subject – was reflective writing. This article explores the ways that writing informed by Queer Theory can be used as a technique in a Foucauldian ethics of the self, especially within the context of the teacher-student relationship in the discipline of creative writing. It further argues that creative writing is an appropriate site for ‘ethical interventions’ into subjectivity and for explorations into how philosophy, in this case Queer Theory, can be applied as a way of life in which new forms of subjectivity are explored and produced. Furthermore, the paper discusses the way that queer readings of literary texts can also be part of an ethics of the self or queer self-making.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published version made available under open access.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Arts and Communication
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2016 01:24
Last Modified: 10 May 2017 04:22
Uncontrolled Keywords: creative writing; queer writing; ethics of the self; Michel Foucault; self-making
Fields of Research : 19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing > 1904 Performing Arts and Creative Writing > 190402 Creative Writing (incl. Playwriting)
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950104 The Creative Arts (incl. Graphics and Craft)
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/27968

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