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Remedios Zafra



An ongoing exercise of political alertness is certainly essential, but so is the visibilizing sharpness of creative minds to represent the subtlest, most hidden effects of forms of domination in the social order; effects materialized through strategies of invisibilization (normalization of symbolic violence) as well as strategies of blindness (seeing with the eyes of the Other). Politics and creativity are vital, then, because violence never rests; it constantly reworks its foundations and the gains of its effectiveness in the inscription of power on sexed bodies and now too in the reiteration of its codes on new agents that represent us (or who we are) in an online world. These creative and political exercises reveal that in a postcorporeal context, forms of sexual domination are still hidden and strategies of blindness towards the act of symbolic and real violence against women are still being normalized.


So effective is this tendency towards repetition (and by extension, normalization) that for the artist and the (feminist) political activist who confronts forms of sexual domination on the Internet, a mere “gaze” with visibilizing intentions is not enough. They must go beyond the mere discovery of encrypted (invisible) writing in online structures and habits. It is also necessary to overcome trances of blindness; that is, the dilemmas of any position of discourse whereby it acts simultaneously as object and reflexive subject, so that by being included in that which we wish to delimit, we unconsciously incorporate structures of the masculine order as structures of perception (it would be, then, a blindness provoked by looking through the eyes of the Other).


If what we are shown as normal is merely the result of reiterated normalization (a political and moral duty traditionally assumed by institutions), any creative or political undertaking which aims to mobilize against the mechanism of an androcentric, patriarchal normalization must face the resignation that feeds the system with its unconscious repetition, its essentialist vision of the difference between the sexes and the blindness of those who cannot look with their own eyes.


Remembering that what, in history, appears to be eternal is merely the product of a labor of eternalization on behalf of certain (interconnected) institutions such as the Family, the Church, the State and the Education System (…) (these simple abstract concepts being stenographic designations of complex mechanisms which in some cases must be analyzed in their historic specificity), is to reinsert in history and thus return to historic action the relation between the sexes that the naturalist, essentialist vision denies them (Bourdieu 2001).


This would be, then, a form of political creativity that cannot fail to appeal to all those who make steganographic readings (as opposed to stenographic) of the world, not because of the conformist evidence of a tendency to perpetuate symbolic violence through forms of invisible writing and consensual blindness, but also through an exercise of resistance to the historic principle that maintains them. Nothing is exempt from this conservative standard, no matter how young it may seem. No technology, no form of science is free from masculinist hegemony and its normalizing strategies. What's more, we look upon science and technology with maximum suspicion. It is not surprising that the system has set up mechanisms within science that guarantee the preeminence of these invisible writings, whose partiality is never recognized since almost all masculine advances have been honored with the historic privilege of “objective science,” although this means nothing but an alibi to act, as Donna Haraway suggests, from the filter of an “abusive ideology” (Haraway 1991).


Creative and political production on the Internet reveals the maintenance (buried or explicit) of exercises of power and sexual vulnerability based on this historic norm, with the added difficulty of the use of the new as a banner of a fictitious change. The new always tries to present itself as something innocent, neutral and ideology-free, encouraging us to set aside the usual distrust with which we feminists usually face other visibly loaded media, arranged into a hierarchy according to a patriarchal ideology-machine.


While it may be true that in the early years of its existence, most female users saw in the Internet an opportunity for effective political action (its dehierarchized structure seemed ideal for this), the Net has not resisted the invisible writing and blind eye of patriarchal power. Instead, it continues to reiterate models of domination, oftentimes protected by the bravery that comes with anonymity and the self-regulatory processes of those who see that historically strong identities and the situations of domination and reactionary powers that maintain them are falling apart. The horizontal nature of the medium, which is constantly invoked as a suitable habitat for deconstruction and dehierarchization of who we are, does not only suggest the materialization of individuals' creative energies in new forms of emancipation, but in many cases merely acts as a disguise for the repetition and sublimation of the collapse of androcentric power.


This repetition cultivates situations of domination of women in different ways, such as the ways in which telecommuting is made precarious and feminized (converting the telematic home into a digital prison), the scarce presence of female executives in the computer and technological industries, or how bodies and sexual identities are represented on the Internet. In all these cases, there is an underlying, active patriarchal ideology.



Invisible Writing


There must be around two million people, most of them women, but also men, who cut themselves with razors. Why? It has nothing to do with masochism or suicide. It's simply that they don't feel real as persons and the idea is: it's only through pain and when you feel warm blood that you feel reconnected again (Zizek 2001).


The flip side of living in an increasingly virtual world is a disquieting apologia of the physical feeling of the body. While we are all being inserted into an artificial, digital world, there seems to be a movement taking place in the opposite direction. Zizek cites “la passion du réel” — the passion of the real. His friend Alain Badiou borrows this term to refer to the tendency (a "reality without reality" that characterizes the entire 20th century), by which in order to be conscious of "the real", touching objects and pinching bodies no longer suffices. The most real experiences will be the ones that are particularly violent, corporal and extreme, able to offset the excess artificiality of a prefabricated world. This process apparently involves a certain degree of self-regulation, of homeostasis, by which one tries to recover corporal, physical sensation in a world where "the real" seems absent. Abruptly jerking the wheel when driving a car at full speed, provoking an accident like the stars of the Cronenberg's film Crash, or bringing sex to the point of death, like Sada Abe and Tatsuya Fuji in Oshima's Empire of Passion (cited by Zizek), would be two examples of this.


These drifts allude to the processes by which, when faced with some kind of overdose (of screens, of flesh…), an opposite response is automatically generated to try to counteract a feeling of "loss". These are the homeostatic mechanisms by which one self-regulates a state exposed to the interaction of the medium, and these are precisely mechanisms that interest us in pursuing our line of argument about invisible writing as a fragmented form of gender violence on the Internet. Mechanisms that seem to pop up in what we do and see several times a day and on different scales. They appear with particular frequency in places where the individuals in question feel they may be losing something valuable (the body or power would be good examples). Their action tends to preserve and maintain a status quo that is being threatened. Thus, in relations between the sexes (relations of power) we could say that these processes of self-regulation are constantly at work to different degrees, to ensure the survival of an androcentric, patriarchal supremacy. These would be processes of "normalization" of power. However, to leave no room for confusion, this self-regulating tendency does not lead to balanced, symmetrical relations between the sexes; rather, it sustains a mythical-ritual system that reveals a profound asymmetry between the sexes and genders.


The principle of the inferiority and exclusion of women, which the mythical-ritual system confirms and amplifies to the point of making it the principle of division of the entire universe, is no more than fundamental asymmetry, that between man and woman in the terrain of symbolic exchange; of the relations of production and reproduction of symbolic capital, whose central mechanism is the marriage market, which make up the foundation of the entire social order. In it, women can only appear as objects, or better put, as symbols whose meaning is constructed without their input and whose function is to contribute to the perpetuation or increase of the symbolic capital possessed by men (Bourdieu 2001).


For many abusers, isn't the radicalization of a feeling of ownership over their partners a way of counteracting their wives' possible attempts at emancipation and independence (economic, professional, personal)? This feeling is present in certain unforgettable phrases uttered by men regarded as eminent thinkers of our culture, who condemn women from their pulpits, in their books and in "their" history, proclaiming her to be the slave of man for her "physical and mental weakness" (G. Bedoya 2002)[1]. It is also present in still-contemporary phrases uttered by abusers and repeated in the media (“I killed her because she was mine”). In all these “death sentences” (real or symbolic) there is always an underlying warning, a mandate from power, as if trying to amass surplus warnings in case it ever occurs to anyone to even out or dehierarchize the hegemonic situation. This warning (materialized in blood, blows, words) cannot be understood as a concrete, isolated event. Each blow is a quote. In gender violence, abuse through words or the body is never a unique occurrence; when it happens, all acts of this nature that come before it are evoked. In its utterance (verbal or physical) each one of the dead, wounded or abused women from every culture, every time period, are present. In its reiteration, the act of domination takes root and is fortified, so that many times only a gesture is needed to warn of what is to come (or might come). A single word or tone of voice thus become metaphorically performative, the mere utterance of which (sometimes even the mere intuition of their presence, their preamble, such as the beginning of a quote that we all know by heart) produces that which means: violence as a way of self-regulating a situation of power.


Could a performative utterance succeed if its formulation didn't repeat a "coded" or iterative utterance? Or in other words, if the formula I pronounce in order to open a meeting, launch a ship or a marriage were not identified in some way as a 'citation'?...in such a typology, the category of intention will not disappear, it will have its place, but from that place it will no longer be able to govern the whole scene and the entire system of utterance (énonciation) (Derrida 1988).


Each abuse, then, is not only a positioning that reaffirms the identity of the dominating subject, it also reasserts the identity of he or she who is listening, renewing the ties of dependency and submission (recycling the eyes of the Other), stabilizing the system and recalling the place which, in the game of power, still corresponds to each of them. The repetition of these situations of violence becomes, for the individuals who experience them, something terribly "normal"; both of them identify themselves in their ideology so that the writings that produce them become invisible.


In its pronouncement, violence dissimulates its origins and the primary conventions by which the man demonstrated (what he thought was) his physical and mental superiority. Yet violence is also an effect of the materialization of sex on the subjects, the materialization of their historicity that makes this violence something structural. In fact, this (structural) consideration has meant protecting it by calling it a "private" matter. That which contributes to sustaining a regime of values and preserving conventional relationships between couples and families, hiding many types of violent behavior by calling it "normal". And then when, for some reason, they step out the front door, they go back to considering it (in hushed voice) a "private matter" (“a lover's spat,” “prison disguised as love”). If the private is not made public, it too becomes invisible writing, or what is the same to the rest of world, it is cancelled out.


Perhaps the Net has something more to say on this matter. Could it be that a medium like the Internet, where the private and the public converge, does not offer new ways of understanding the invisibilization of personal conflicts confined to the ostracism of "the private"? It is not just a question of the "all-seeing eye" and webcams invading our homes, turning the kitchen into a public meeting place, but also that the filters used so the public can access the private without homogenizing patina (and vice versa) are more viable in a network where the user also produces and distributes information. Moreover, we cannot underestimate the changes that "the private" has been undergoing, in recent decades, as a result of the feminist struggle and artistic activism. If the important thing for an androcentric society is to maintain certain control mechanisms so the situation doesn't teeter, feminist art on the Internet aims to visiblize and subvert these mechanisms. In fact, in this political arena we find politically committed works of net.art, such as the monument to victims of domestic violence Parthenia (www.parthenia.com) by Margot Lovejoy, which operate precisely in this convergence, making private and real stories of domestic  violence public. Or others such as Mythic Hybrid (http://www.premamurthy.net/project_mythic.html) by Prema Murthy, where using a search engine, a deconstruction of mythologies about feminine hysterics and collective hallucinations attributed to workers in South Asian microelectronics companies is simulated, subverting the mechanisms of unidirectional interpretation and the partisan "filters" that relate women to technology, from the multiple perspectives suggested by the very action of web searching.


Yet this interpretation, presented as a creative, feminist possibility for action, has already been met with skeptical responses in the camouflaged hegemony of Internet, which keeps repeating (especially when it comes to the participation and representation of women) the same univocal forms of writing history that we have always seen. It could be that the best allies of the conservative spirit whose patina covers the power structure are the myths that sustain the violence considered structural. In fact, historically transmitted myths about gender are an essential part of patriarchal structures where gender violence is developed and maintained, myths loaded with perverse "blue and pink" signs whose destiny is impregnated with implicit messages about what we "can be" in the world. There is no need to look very far: the images and narrations that make up the collective imaginary conceal forms of resistance to the patriarchy, forms of violence and subjugation of women safeguarded (without irony) behind the apparent fiction of the story and the artificiality of the images. This denunciation of the mythology implicit  or in many cases shameless in some of most important stories (just have a look at the Bible) is also considered in the net.art work entitled The Intruder (http://www.calarts.edu/~bookchin/intruder/) by Natalie Bookchin, where she makes an ironic, cyberfeminist re-reading of "ownership" and "violence against women" in Borges' homonymous story La Intrusa ("The Intruder").


These mythologies do not disappear on the Internet. In many cases, they are actually more widespread, particularly in video games and the sex businesses that flood the Net. The strengthening of stereotypes and violence upon the virtual "body" that recreates the woman is a regular occurrence in cyberspace. It is a new way of giving free reign to the responses generated by a patriarchal model in which we maintain our sociocultural values. This model continues to be supported in men's healthy relationship with sex and women's still reproachable relationship with themselves. Thus, women end up being regarded, in the majority of make-believe video game situations or lucrative sex businesses, as sexual merchandise and objects, while men consume, maintain and finance this system as active subjects.

The need to repeat these behaviors and identify who is in control and who is not, who acts as subject and who becomes a thing, begs additional readings. The fact that this situation of domination and, in many cases, violence (symbolic or real) repeats itself makes us think that it is not something the subjects do innately, but rather it needs to be reaffirmed in order to be maintained. In other words, it is not static. If sex is a "regulatory practice that produces the bodies it governs,” (Butler 1993).[2] Violence is one of the mechanisms used to produce bodies. If materiality is the effect of power, it is during this process that the masculine heterosexuality of consumers and video game programmers accentuates the boundaries marked by their stereotype and hegemonic position. They exaggerate them like one who is trying to counteract a world (beyond screens) that is beginning to denounce the outdatedness of that stance; that is, which situates male heterosexuality in crisis. The need to exaggerate and reiterate these behaviors is only, then, the sign that the materialization of sex in the body via discursive practices is not a static, closed process that occurs in the individual. Instead, as Butler suggests, that materialization is never complete, so bodies never end up accepting those determinations. Visibilizing the instabilities of this dynamic process that affect the possibility of the rematerialization of sex could perhaps make the very hegemonic system that produces them wobble.


If the wound marks of violence are left on the physical body, the marks literally produced by physical abuse, the virtual body can likewise be wounded by the subject's possible contradictory utterance (that is, the instabilities of the dynamic process) when one rebels against the stereotype identity (dominant or submissive) that only the perverse game of power can generate. Only in the factitious spaces of representation and artificiality, such as art and the digital medium, can we visiblize these contradictions and make them coexist. The video piece I am Milica Tomic by Milica Tomic comes to mind, where the presentation of the main character through successive, mutually exclusive identities (whose utterances cancel out the previous one) is materialized in the representation of physical wounds on the face. Visibilizing this incompatibility is only possible in the terrain of artificiality. The stigmas of sexual identity also cause wounds (those inflicted by power). Yvonne Volkart has suggested that only digital technology is capable of creating such wounds. In the digital space, both the cuts and the body are artificial and therefore incompatible. The situation is metaphorical. The desires of the reproduced identities are not inscribed on the body; however, the body finds itself faced with the paradox of being “at once body and symbol” (the subject articulated on a vulnerable body is also real).



The Blind Eye (Seeing With the Eyes of the Other)

Why should the body end at the skin or include, in the best case, other beings encapsulated by the skin? (Haraway 1991).

We netianas arise from life experiences but we are radical forms of reincarnation
(Zafra 2005).

“Seeing with the eyes of the Other” has, following the line of argument presented here and in the specific context of the Internet, a double meaning. On one hand, “seeing with the eyes of the Other” refers to one of the characteristics of subjugated individuals when faced with any sort of gender violence; that is, the domination of the gaze that blinds the victims. A gaze by which the abused woman projects and observes from the role that has been imposed on her in a situation of reiterated violence. One descriptive characteristic of this type of gaze is the feeling of guilt that makes her feel responsible for the violence others inflict on her (she sees through the eyes of the abuser). However, further consideration of gender violence on the Internet suggests a second meaning, a unique reading of the intersubjective and interfaceted relationship characteristic of the Internet. “Seeing with the eyes of the Other” refers, then, to the possibility of escaping those “fake eyes,” imposed by the dominant ideology and maintained by the reactionary spirit of institutions, of freeing ourselves from the eyes through many other possible eyes, through non-essentialist exercises of temporal release from the body. It is not so much a therapy (although “putting yourself in the other's place” usually generates situations of empathy and tolerance for the "Other" that psychologists would surely recommend) but a real creative, experimental exercise in “giving form to themselves.”

Yet the difficulties of producing the subject on the Net can not be underestimated. If the visible is a guarantee of social definition, if social definition of the body is the product of a social labor of construction and reiteration — that is, an exercise of vision and identification — and this is  also the fruit of a social hierarchization of bodies, then what happens when the physical body is "not there," at least not conventionally speaking? What happens when the most basic notion of sexual identity is put (potentially cross-dressed) behind a screen? The body, or the corporealization of the subject, as Braidotti suggests, “should not be understood either as a biological category or a social category, but rather a point of overlapping between the physical, the symbolical and the sociological." (Braidotti 1994). By this logic, the materiality of sexual difference is not limited to the physical body, just as power is not concentrated in specific places. The basis of most feminist redefinitions of subjectivity emphasizes the sexually differentiated and corporealized structure of the speaking subject; this is the point of departure for numerous epistemological projects on subjectivity. For Braidotti for example, redefining the corporeal roots of subjectivity is the seed of her epistemological project on nomadism. This brings us to the observation that for the nomad quality of the online subject (whose sexual identity and other characteristics inscribed on the body are artificial online and potentially changeable) this anti-essentialist approach is key to the link of the materiality of sexual difference to the body on the Internet. A nomadic character of identities could then be an effective way of freeing us from the blind eye. It would undoubtedly be a creative exercise that would allow us to use the eyes of the Other using fluid, immaterial, disassembleable nomadic bodies.


In fact, although the machine acts as a new field of inscription of socio-symbolic codes that converges with the physical body, the drifting-off through the forms of immaterial presence where the online subject is produced causes the body to rest (a rest that seems to temporarily free us from the blind eye). This practice could become the new representation of a regulatory ideal[3] (Butler 1993) (in the Foucaultian sense) that also occurs in the physical world, or the subversion and experimentation of new discourses that constitute the virtual body.


Having arrived to this point, our bodies on the Net cannot be understood as a biological category, although perhaps as a performativity, a new variety of bodies/verb of multiple, changeable appearances that when uttered are already being realized. This begs another question: (if we recall Butler) the reiterative and referential practice by which the discourse produces the effects that she mentions makes us consider the performativity of the regulatory norms of sex, and thus, how these favor the materiality of sexual difference depending on heterosexual hegemony (power). In this context, what would the material and discursive limits of the online subject be? What would the new forms of violence "without bodies" be? In the physical world, these limits can be established by the forced effect of sex (Butler 1993), and just as sex regulates the terms that materialize bodies the validity (or not) of these is confirmed in accordance with hegemonic models. But when the physical differences and their variables are blurred or cancelled out by hiding the bodies, we can play around with the place occupied by the discursive and material limits of sex on the Internet. Then we can ask ourselves, "what do bodies matter?” in a medium where the subject is produced through an interface. Might this dematerializing process be the driving force of a new epistemology of the subject in matters of sex as well? In this case, it would seem that sex is not excluded from the realm of the body, but quite the opposite: the body is excluded from the realm of sex, of its ideological materialization in gender which, when liberated, adopts dematerialized, non-essentialist formulas. In this context, the disturbing return seems not to be from sex to the body but from the body to sex. Temporally freed from the burdens of the corporal, the alternation of dematerialization and reincarnation processes would perhaps affect a new symbolic horizon.


On the other hand, although individuals' sexual materiality is determined by heterosexual, hegemonic patterns, according to which they are closely tied to power relations, the fact that on the Internet this “materiality” is “dematerialized” does not protect us from that action of power. The territory machine-Internet is not exempt of that dominance (in fact, Internet is another production of power), even if it has been sold to us an a utopian, horizontal, dehierarchized structure. If in horizontal media new conditions about intersubjective relations are established, a deceptive relationship is also present in them, caused by thinking that our position (in a rizomatic network) is equal to that of the other online subjects. The forms of resistance and action would be different, however, as would the forms of power. In these kinds of structures, the new articulations of power might be represented by the action of small, mobile and disperse cells, less defined but which could be equally effective in their attempts to perpetuate hegemonic systems in the technology industry. But in these ways of establishing power and violence there are also new ways of building up resistance to them (to their homogenization and banalization strategies, the normalization of their myths). Some of the most interesting artistic and political projects developed by feminists on the Internet come to mind: obn (www.obn.org) or subrosa (www.cyberfeminism.net), for example.


Creative perspicacity is necessary to re-read and deconstruct the repetition and normalization of myths about gender on the Internet. But this action is insufficient if it is not accompanied by bringing women closer to the spheres where power has historically been held, those places where paid labor has been done and technology has been invented. The infiltration of the "Other" and the modification of the sphere of power itself are fundamental if the violence of invisible writing and the blind eye of Internet are to be subverted.


Power has gender and the mechanisms by which this determination is established are the same as those that are used to maintain a situation of violence both on and offline. However, the introduction of the Other woman into power (jobs involving  technological invention and leadership) would not be viable insofar as power itself is not feminized; not in the sense of promoting higher levels of participation, but in sense of changing the structure itself and the understanding of power. It may well be that this feminization is only possible through recognizing and respecting the inner "Other" of male sexuality that preserves his status (we cannot tolerate the “Others” because we cannot tolerate the otherness in ourselves (Kristeva 1991).


This task is not easy. If the technologies that are presented as neutral are merely the product and intention of culturally and socially codified specters of power, strictly regulated on the ideological and cultural level, the battle stands to be particularly tough, since the specters forged and strengthened over centuries of patriarchy are not just part of the technologies but also our own identities and bodies. Therefore, it seems that little can be done but smile with a tender nihilism that reconciles us (as women) to our "sweetest, most submissive" quality of mythical obedience and resignation. The battle is tough because giving in is also an effect of the normalization of power but, undoubtedly, the dominated subject is (perversely) satisfied by the temptation to escape her freedom and become a thing. In that position, one escapes the pain of the awareness of an adopted existence.


With a certain degree of distance and all the resistance to succumbing to this previously-described position, we see that it is necessary for the processes of women's awareness and emancipation to go hand in hand with bringing them closer to the spheres where power has historically been held. In the case of technology and the Internet, this is achieved through women's professional incorporation into fields not restricted to mere repetitive action mediated by machines (assembly line workers, typists and gears on the lowest levels of the production chain) and the rise of immaterial work mediated by communication networks (telework). This emancipation of the woman through technology has different possible readings. On one hand, the determination of the subjects' different roles based on their gender (starting with their being considered as producers worthy of a Capitalist system) facilitates the production and maintenance of stereotypes of men and women and the roles traditional systems wish to preserve. On the other hand, the reconfiguration of spaces where public and private activities have conventionally been developed and differentiated gives rise to the need to rethink both spheres now merged into a single space where production, reception and distribution of knowledge also come together. In this context, digital technology may be both a medium that promotes women's emancipation as well as a new mechanism of isolation in domestic spaces (which many still have not managed to escape). In this case, the Internet could become for many women a new prison, this time a digital one.


Invisible writing and the blind eye are present in these strategies of power on the Internet, generating an apparent imbalance between the possibilities suggested by the Net (those we imagine) and the (spectral) reality given to us. However, this imbalance is no more than a new agent of the self-regulatory processes that ensure the survival of androcentric, patriarchal supremacy. The imbalance does not destabilize the process of normalizing violence, but rather it helps sustain that system. Facing this situation requires the acute, ironic, and visibilizing action of creative minds as well as an ongoing exercise of political alertness. But it also calls for the generation of “time” for thought, capable of resisting the fast pace of the media, “time” that helps us deconstruct the "ghost" that covers, like a hardened patina, the physical and social structures where technology is invented and produced, where invisible writing and the blind eye make it difficult for us to detect new and old forms of violence and domination (with or without bodies).

Remedios Zafra is teacher Permanent Lecturer and dr. PhD of Fine Art (University of Seville). As a writer she has published the essays: Netianas.N(h)acer mujer en Internet, (colección Desórdenes, L.T.),  Las cartas rotas. Espacios de igualdad y feminización en Internet (Briseño, 2002) and Habitar en (punto)net (Cátedra Leonor de Guzmán and University of Cordoba, 2004), as well as numerous articles and essays about artistic creation, digital culture and feminism in specialized and educational books and magazines. She was the winner of the 2004 Caja Madrid National Essay Award, the 2000 Carmen de Burgos National Essay Award, the 2001 Leonor de Guzmán Professor Research Award and the Antonia Pérez Alegre National Poetry Prize in 2005. She has headed up diverse artistic projects on the Web, among them the online magazine Mujer y Cultura Visual, the creative project e-dentidades (web-side 1.0, Mediateca CaixaForum, Barcelona, 2004)  and the net.art exhibition Habitar en (punto)net (Espai f, Mataró, Barcelona, 2003).


Bibliographical References


Bourdieu, P. Masculine Domination. (Trans. by Richard Nice) Cambridge: Polity Press, 2001. Braidotti, R. Nomad subjects: Embodiment and Sexual Difference in Contemporary Feminist

Theory. New York: Columbia University Press, 1994

Derrida, J. “Signature, Event, Context”, en Limited, Inc. Gerald Graff (ed.). Evanston:

Northwestern University Press, 1988.

Foucault, M. cited in Butler, J. Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of "Sex". London:            Routledge, 1993.

G. Bedoya, J. “Me matas y aún beso tu puñal”, El País, June 18, 2002. Source: Asociación de

hombres por la igualdad de género. http://www.ahige.org

Haraway, D. “A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism

in the Late Twentieth Century”. Simians, Cyborgs, and Women. New York: Routledge, 1991

Kristeva, J. Strangers to Ourselves. (trans. by L.S.Roudiez), New York: Columbia University Press, 1991.

Volkart, Y. “Technologies of Identity”, in The Body Caught in the Intestines of the Computer and Beyond. Women's Strategies and/or Strategies by Women in Media, Art and Theory. Edited by M. Grzinic and A. Eisenstein. Ljubljana: Maribor, 2000.

Zafra, R.  Netianas. N(h)acer mujer en Internet. Madrid: Colección Desórdenes, L.T., 2005.

Zizek, S. “Interview with Slavoj Zizek. The One Measure of True Love Is: You Can Insult the Other” by S. Reul and T. Deichmann in Spiked, http://www.spiked-online.com. 2001.


[1] The woman is subject to the laws of nature and is a slave to the laws of circumstances. The woman is subject to the man for her physical and mental weakness," wrote Thomas Aquinas, which ecclesiastics read every day while preparing their premarital classes. In the height of the Enlightenment, Jean Jacques Rousseau didn't hold back either: “Women are made to obey men, women should learn to suffer injustices and put up with the tyrannies of a cruel husband without protesting.”

[2] Foucault, M. cited in Butler 2002.

[3] The category of “sex” is, from the beginning, normative; it is what Foucault called a “regulatory ideal,” cited in BUTLER 1993.