Another Masquerade? The Temporary Dominatrix and the Erotic

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Representations of the dominatrix are becoming increasingly common in popular culture, as is the “look” of the dominatrix in graphic novels, music videos and live entertainment. Additionally, female characters that turn to a brief enactment of the look and behaviour of the dominatrix are becoming profuse in advertising, situation comedy, television drama, film and so forth. This paper explores the narrative and ideological functions of such a performance in which the female becomes a “temporary dominatrix” across a range of examples from various media and considers this performance as an ambiguous “masquerade.” The temporary dominatrix is assessed according to the concept of the dominatrix as a female archetype and the comic nature of the typical temporary dominatrix scenario is problematised, exposing its range of comic functions that sit, sometimes uncomfortably, alongside clichéd constructions of the erotic. The consequences of the performance by the female character are also reviewed, with interesting conclusions about pleasures available to the viewer.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalThe Global Journal of Sensuality, Sexuality & the Erotic
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

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