Date of Submission

Spring 2022

Academic Program

Literature; Gender and Sexuality Studies

Project Advisor 1

Robert Weston

Abstract/Artist's Statement

This project examines the influence of Freudian psychoanalysis and Aristotelianism on Valerie Solanas’ radical 1967 text, the SCUM Manifesto. Mapping out the future of women’s liberation from patriarchy, SCUM offers a blistering critique of the male-dominated social order and a plan of action for a women-led utopia devoid of the male species. The ingenious manifesto, however, was only introduced to the public the following year, after the author became notorious for shooting Andy Warhol. Solanas, who never intended for an association between SCUM and the shooting, was condemned by feminists of the second-wave movement as a madwoman, save for a few unexpected allies, and SCUM was dismissed as an extremist text. My writing on SCUM seeks to recast Solanas as an authoritative voice on critical theory and contextualize the text as a prepense work of discourse spanning psychology, biology, and philosophy. By examining SCUM in conjunction with the theories of Freud and Aristotle, as well as philosophical and feminist scholarship, the project analyzes how Solanas appropriates androcentric modes of discourse and parodies the phallogocentric arguments of male thinkers to serve the women’s liberation cause.

Open Access Agreement

Open Access

Creative Commons License

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