Viljan att veta
en analys av Mona Hatoums verk Corps étranger via bio-politik och science fiction
Visual cultureMona HatoumPost structuralismPost modernPornographyScience fictionScienceKnowledgePowerLacanFoucaultBarthes
In this paper Mona Hatoums installation Corps étranger is discussed via a post structuralized method based on associative and semiotic comparisons with vanitas, a post-modern self-portrait, and as a representative for modern visual art. The analyze touches upon pornography, science fiction and the quest for scientific conquest in outer and inner space. Theoretical references are Foucault, Freud, Lacan, Barthes, Dolar, Said and Virilio. Hatoum makes the observer a voyageur with the aid of the latest medical technology, endoscope, which gives her the opportunity to make an introvert self-portrait when she films her own throat and rectum. But at the same time she makes the portrait of us all. I interpret this as a fictious science with postcolonial ideas, and the reference to science fiction is close at range. Hatoum takes the role as the other, the woman or the stranger and might flirt with Jülich interpretation of Corps étranger as a sign of the visual cultures colonisation of the human body?s inside, that is a conscious reference to sexuality, ethics and the search for knowledge and power.