From Melling’s Harem to Eviner’s Harem : displacement as parrhesia

Diken, Bulent and Tuncer, Ezgi (2019) From Melling’s Harem to Eviner’s Harem : displacement as parrhesia. Third Text, 33 (6). pp. 671-686. ISSN 0952-8822

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Antoine-Ignace Melling's engraving Inside the Harem of the Sultan (c 1810) depicts women's everyday life and their relationships, rituals and spatial practices in the Ottoman harem. Two centuries later, İnci Eviner, one of the leading contemporary artists internationally acclaimed for her solo and group exhibitions as well as for her contribution to numerous biennials, animates the same anonymous women in her video Harem (2009) by displacing the spatio-temporal nexus of Melling's work and exposes, in the manner of a visual parrhesia, the desires, the revolting gestures and the violence inherent in the harem. To discuss the nature of this displacement, we open with a few initial remarks on Melling's Harem. Then we focus on Eviner's Harem, elaborating on the forms of subjectivity and spatiality it evokes. In this discussion we pay special attention to the role of becoming, sacrifice, resurrection and the virtual in Eviner's work. The power relation specific to the harem, that of between the despot and the female slave, plays a pivotal role in this context. To end with, we turn to another significant work by Eviner, The Parliament, which, rather unexpectedly, relates the subjective and spatial nexus of the Oriental harem to Western politics.

Item Type:
Journal Article
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Third Text
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This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Third Text on 4/10/2019, available online:
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? bülent dikenezgi tuncerİnci evinerantoine-ignace mellingharemparliamentorientalismbecomingresistanceresurrectionvirtualsacrificerefugeesvisual arts and performing artscultural studies ??
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Deposited On:
02 Nov 2018 14:46
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 18:35