Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://theses-test.ncl.ac.uk:8080/jspui/handle/10443.1/1831
Title: Voice, body and performance in Tori Amos, Björk and Diamanda Galás : towards a theory of feminine vocal performance
Authors: Zaplana Rodríguez, Esther
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: This thesis explores the vocal and musical performance of several women artists and undertakes a cultural analysis of some of their works from a gendered perspective. The readings examine primarily the meanings of the voice in performances by Tori Amos, Bjork and Diamanda Galas, as well as a few aspects of avant-garde vocal performer Fatima Miranda. The cultural interpretation engages with the artists' musical and visual displays in order to disclose the relationship between the voice and the gaze, and to argue, thereby, that vocality in musical production becomes a means for the woman singer to construct her own (self) representation and affirm her enunciative position as a speaking subject in culture. Within the specific case studies, an element in the discussion focuses on the centrality of the body and the audience figuration of the singing body, given that representations are understood as vehicles for 'hidden' messages about the gendered body. The body-source of the voice is brought into the analysis as a way to enable a set of new meanings associated with the positioning of the female artist vis-a-vis the representation she performs in her artistic display. The study is framed by the individual (albeit, in concrete ways, related) ideas of French feminists Luce Irigaray, Helene Cixous and Julia Kristeva, bearing in mind that Irigaray emerges as the main theorist who informs the research. By engaging with the thinking of these authors, the research contributes an argument for the relevance of their concepts, language, and aesthetics to the analysis of women's vocal performance. In line with their reconsideration of psychoanalytic and linguistic categories, as well as Irigaray's re-conceptualisation of sexual categories, the study develops a theoretical approach from which to examine the cultural dimension of feminine vocal performance. The analysis is thus situated between psychoanalysis and postmodem feminist theories, and links the signification of an auditory culture produced by women to the wider context of a gender politics of (self) representation.
Description: PhD Thesis
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10443/1831
Appears in Collections:School of Arts and Cultures

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