Is making art a knowledge production?
Beyza Dilem Toptal, Ozyegin University

This paper will investigate whether making art is a production of knowledge. It will Explain knowledge production of art and science interrelations through Actor Network Theory methodology. Not seeing the artwork as a resulting material; but as a knowledge production process that becomes the art itself at the end is the main objective. Bruno Latour and Michel Callon’s perspectives will build the ground to understand this interdisciplinary production process. Artists working in collaboration with scientists or using scientific research methods to produce artwork with a process heavy background; under the category of new media art will be examined. ANT will be used to understand artworks of different artists: Pınar Yoldaş, Heather Dewey Hagborg and Studio Folder. Each artwork had taken as an ‘actant’ in the network and the process is discussed in order to understand how art and science translates into knowledge production. The arguments will be also backed up by an interview with the artist Dr. Pınar Yoldas. As a conclusion it will be speculated whether art equals to science, and suggest a way on how we can bring art back to life.

 

Tending to the ‘neglected anxiety disorder’: a critique of the psy science literature on women and social anxiety disorder
Katie Masters, University of Birmingham

Social phobia was first classified as a disorder by psychiatry in the 1900s, but initially received little attention compared to other anxiety disorders. Consequently, Liebowitz (1985) gave it the epithet ‘the neglected anxiety disorder’. It has since been the object of increasing interest and study in psychiatry, entering the DSM-II in 1968 and now existing in both the DSM-5 and the ICD-11 as ‘social anxiety disorder’. Despite growing interest in SAD, its sociological underpinnings have been largely unaddressed by the psy sciences. Moreover, these disciplines have sought to explain SAD’s overrepresentation in women using chiefly biological, genetic, reproductive, and hormonal arguments. If they are made at all, mentions of social factors are perfunctory and reliant on tired gender stereotypes: societal expectations and their ensuing effects remain unexamined. Other mental health issues which disproportionately affect women, such as eating disorders (Fallon et al. 1996) and depression (Stoppard 1999), have been subject to feminist and feminist constructivist analyses, respectively, but SAD has yet to receive such treatment. As part of my wider research, which applies this approach to SAD in women, I perform a close reading and discourse analysis on a small corpus of papers from the extant psy science literature concerning sex and/or gender and SAD. The corpus comprises Altemus’s (2006) psychiatry paper, ‘Sex differences in depression and anxiety disorders: Potential biological determinants’, and Roberts et al.’s (2011) psychology paper, ‘Gender role traits among individuals with social anxiety disorder’. Implementing ideas from feminist science studies, I provide a commentary on these papers from a critical humanities perspective. I uncover sexism, existing under the guise of scientific objectivity, and conclusions which wrongly dismiss or obfuscate exogenous contributors to SAD. Along with discovering methodologies and conclusions which are problematic from a feminist viewpoint, I find that they are often scientifically unsound and unjustified.

 

Shakespearean Corporealities: The Early Modern Body in Medicine and Literature
Mary Odbert, University of Birmingham, Shakespeare Institute

It’s no secret that art and science have worked indispensably together to illuminate the body throughout the history of medicine. The iconic works of Andreas Vesalius set the study of anatomy and physiology on a path not only aided by but absolutely dependent on the visual arts for the analysis and dissemination of the evidence revealed in empirical dissection. These revelations about the internal workings of the human body shifted paradigms across disciplines throughout the early modern period. While scientists worked to answer physiological questions otherwise left to unknowable divine purpose, artists grappled with the new visceral parameters of selfhood intimated by the Vesalian call nosce te ipsum to “know thyself” by knowing the anatomical body. Shakespeare took up this endeavor and brought medical science to the dramatic and literary arts by instilling this sense of visceral corporeality into his character development. The instances of wounded, mutilated, and dismembered bodies on stage throughout the Shakespearean canon are more than shallow gore spectacles. Instead, they offer a non-fatal creative space- one critically aware of the work of anatomists, surgeons, and physicians- in which the dissected body can be examined for its emotional, cultural, aesthetic, and interpersonal values. My research examines the corporeal elements of characterization legible in viscerally aware characters like Coriolanus and Titus Andronicus in order to highlight the ways in which Shakespearean drama participated in the construction of the early modern body.