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Title: Heroic realism : rhetoric and violence in narratives of justice and discourses of decision
Author: Beech, Amanda
ISNI:       0000 0004 2690 848X
Awarding Body: Goldsmiths, University of London
Current Institution: Goldsmiths College (University of London)
Date of Award: 2003
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After the evacuation of a transcendental ethic as a universal yardstick or law for action, notions of justice, morality and the law nevertheless remain policed, and are still invested in by strong systems of belief and prejudice. This thesis sets out to analyse the tradition and prevalence of “idealising” moments of consequence, judgement and decision and their specific relation to a transcendental-style aesthetics of violence. In this written thesis and in my studio-based work I examine the themes of “naturalised justice” and “decision” as means to achieve autonomy, hinged as they are upon critical, theoretical and cultural representations of, and responses to, the problem of the ubiquity of violence. As such, my thesis also asks how the rhetoric of this apparently mutual or shared conviction of autonomy as aggression, violence or force, produces judgement within culture in general, upon and within the condition of absolute finitude. It is through the empirical examination of my studio practice that I consider the universalising forces of individual authorities using the “worn out metaphors” of the post-tragic hero genre. Here, I create movie poster type images and pop-music style videos in which my appropriation of the powerful propaganda of Hollywood movies lives out the impossibility of exteriority, that is, the difficulty of separating this use of the medium from my being caught up within it. These apparently abstract and generic narratives of agency are the focus of my practice throughout. Through them, I investigate (i) the rhetoric of “violence as decision” as something which undermines its own determinism; (ii) the political force of such rhetoric in relation to the naturalisation of belief, (such as traditional, conventional and assumed agreements in the social); and (iii) the procedures and consequences of performances of the rhetoric of violence practiced in the judgements and convictions of individual subjects. (Abstract, A. Beech)
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available