Brown Jouissance and Inhabitations of the Pornotrope
This chapter analyzes Lyle Ashton Harris’s performative self-portrait of himself citing Billie Holiday—Billie #21 (2002)—as an entry point into illustrating the ways that thinking with the pornotrope challenges understandings of sexuality by pointing to the presence of violence in relation to black and brown bodies. The chapter then introduces the concept of brown jouissance as a way to think about race in concert with psychoanalysis and in order to think about projects of selfhood in relation to fleshiness. Ultimately, the chapter argues that Billie #21 illuminates brown jouissance through its aesthetics of citation and its form as a Polaroid.
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