OCAD University Open Research Repository

Redefining Hyperfemininity: Claiming Femme Power through Love and Celebration

Camille, Stephanie (2024) Redefining Hyperfemininity: Claiming Femme Power through Love and Celebration. Masters thesis, OCAD University.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Camille, Stephanie

My research delves into the complex interplay between hyperfemininity and gender performance within my own life, employing autoethnography as a methodological lens. Guided by the theory of gender performativity, which posits that gender is constructed through repeated actions and behaviours, I examine my commitment to performing hyperfemininity—a style entrenched in heterosexist and sexist ideals. The exploration encompasses interconnected aspects such as girlhood, agency, control, power, and the gaze.
As a self-proclaimed feminist, lesbian, and woman, I confront my initial research question: “Why am I so girly?” Through my thesis, I argue that my hyperfeminine performance, coupled with an embrace of girly aesthetics, serves as a purposeful assertion of power and control in my life through love, and is potentially disconnected from the male gaze.
Engaging with contemporary feminist theory, particularly issues related to identities and categories, my study begins but extends beyond personal introspection. A significant portion of the thesis is a gallery show, titled Femme. These artworks, depicting themes of celebration, love, and blissful femininity, add a unique visual and personal dimension to the exploration of hyperfemininity within my identity. Oil paint’s inherent connection with ‘high art’ is juxtaposed with collage— a medium associated with juvenile, uncontrolled, free expression— and work in tandem to further explore the complex contradictions within feminine performance.
In essence, my thesis is a multifaceted examination that navigates the complexities of hyperfemininity, intertwining personal narratives with theoretical frameworks and visual representations. Through this comprehensive approach, I aim to contribute to the broader discourse on gender, identity, and feminist theory.

Date: 28 March 2024
Uncontrolled Keywords: Feminism, Femme, Lesbian, Girlhood, hyperfemininity, femininity, identity
Divisions: Graduate Studies > Interdisciplinary Art, Media and Design
Date Deposited: 08 May 2024 18:37
Last Modified: 08 May 2024 18:37
URI: https://openresearch.ocadu.ca/id/eprint/4483

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