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Dead Matter: The Meaning of Iconic Corpses, An Illustrated Lecture with Margaret Schwartz, Fordham University
Morbid Anatomy Museum
Brooklyn, NY
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Dead Matter: The Meaning of Iconic Corpses, An Illustrated Lecture with Margaret Schwartz, Fordham University
Date: Thursday, March 24th
Time: 7pm
Admission: $8
Location: Morbid Anatomy Museum, 424 Third Avenue, 11215 Brooklyn


A corpse is much more than a dead body. By examining the association between photography and embalming both as aesthetics and as mourning practices Margaret Schwartz theorizes the connections between the body and the image. The result is a new politics of representation wherein certain bodies are privileged with control over their images in death, and others are not. Thus the bodies of superstars like Michael Jackson or David Bowie circulate posthumously in ways that enhance their legacies and their estate coffers, while the iconic images of victims like Trayvon Martin or Michael Brown are shown without consent of the families or respect for their dignity in death. This comparison points out the ways in which congress with and respect for the dead is a lost art in desperate need of recuperation.

Margaret Schwartz is associate professor of Communication and Media Studies at Fordham University. She is a media theorist whose work focuses on the problem of embodiment in media culture by looking at places where language, gender, the body and technology intersect. The corpse presents itself as a key example of such an intersection, because it is both a body and a representation of a departed person in the medium of its own flesh. Her book Dead Matter: The Meaning of Iconic Corpses, on which this talk is based, is published by the University of Minnesota Press.

Location

Morbid Anatomy Museum (View)
424 A Third Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215
United States

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