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Bad Spirit


Bad Spirit

Ergina, Malaea (2023) Bad Spirit. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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In Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Arachne challenges Minerva to a weaving contest and creates a tapestry that depicts the indiscretions of the gods, a record of human suffering. Minerva, offended, beats Arachne with her boxwood shuttle and destroys her tapestry; when Arachne hangs herself in protest, Minerva transforms her into a spider.

We know a little more about spiders than they used to, and it seems that if you sweep away a spider’s web, you may damage its memory as well as its home. The web serves, in some ways, as an extension of the spider’s mind. Although the research is inconclusive, as an image it encapsulates my interests: how to understand both embodiment and suffering, extended/embodied cognition in the face of impossible force, and the problems of trauma and memory.

In approaching these problems, my work is in conversation with Julia Kristeva’s essay “The Powers of Horror,” in its engagement with objects, substances, and experiences that evoke discomfort and disgust (spiders and insects, viscera, hair, etc.). The central conflict of an avoidant lyric speaker encountering that which is uncontainable and leaking affect under that pressure is the at the centre of the project.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > English
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Ergina, Malaea
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Date:23 June 2023
Thesis Supervisor(s):Stephanie, Bolster
ID Code:992838
Deposited By: Malaea Ergina
Deposited On:24 Oct 2023 20:15
Last Modified:24 Oct 2023 20:15
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