A talk by Tobin Siebers (Department of English, University of Michigan) with a response by Elizabeth Leake (Department of Italian, Columbia University)"The Mad Women Project: Disability and the Aesthetics of Human Disqualification" takes its departure from a series of photographs by Park Young-Sook called "The Mad Women Project," with the goal of debating significant arguments designed by the field of disability studies. From 1999 to 2005 Park investigated the representation of women with mental disabilities by photographing gestures and postures used to identify women as "crazy." We will examine the physical echoes of cognitive and intellectual disability, interrogating how aesthetics participates in the disqualification of disabled people as inferior. We will also consider "The Mad Women Project" in the context of feminist theory and the work of Cindy Sherman.
Reception to follow