IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium-MWG 007 Postmodernism & Gender is a course offered by Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) that delves into the intersection of postmodern theory and gender studies.

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium

Course Structure:

  • Block 1: Introduction to Postmodernism and Gender: This block sets the foundation by clarifying key concepts within both postmodernism and gender studies. It explores the challenges postmodernism poses to traditional notions of gender identity, sex, and representation.
  • Block 2: Power and Resistance: This block analyzes how power operates through language, discourse, and cultural narratives, focusing on its impact on gender constructions and experiences. It also examines strategies for resistance and challenging entrenched power structures.
  • Block 3: Deconstructing Gender: This block delves into deconstructing the binary opposition of male/female, exploring the fluidity and multiplicity of gender identities, and engaging with concepts like masculinity studies and queer theory.
  • Block 4: Representing Gender: This block focuses on representations of gender in various media and cultural forms, critically analyzing how these representations impact and shape perceptions of gender identities and experiences.
  • Block 5: Postmodernity and Globalized Gender: This block examines how globalization and contemporary trends interact with and influence conceptions of gender, exploring themes like migration, consumerism, and technological advancements.

Q.1 . Discuss Julia Kristeva's use of psychoanalytic theory with special attention to the notion of 'Semanalysis'.

Julia Kristeva, a prominent French psychoanalyst, literary theorist, and feminist philosopher, has made significant contributions to the field of psychoanalytic theory. Her work is characterized by its interdisciplinary nature, drawing from linguistics, semiotics, and psychoanalysis. One of Kristeva's key concepts is "Semanalysis," a term that encapsulates her unique approach to understanding the interplay of language, subjectivity, and the unconscious.

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium-Kristeva's engagement with psychoanalytic theory, particularly the ideas of Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan, forms the foundation of her theoretical framework. She extends and innovates upon their insights, introducing her own concepts to enrich the understanding of the psyche and its expression through language. Central to Kristeva's work is the idea that the human subject is inherently split and that language is a primary site for the manifestation of this internal division.

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The notion of the "semiotic" and the "symbolic" are fundamental to Kristeva's theoretical framework. Drawing inspiration from Lacan, Kristeva delineates between the semiotic, associated with the pre-linguistic and the rhythmic elements of language, and the symbolic, which represents structured language and societal norms. However, Kristeva expands this binary by introducing the "chora," a term denoting the semiotic aspect that operates at the margins of the symbolic. The chora represents a fluid, pre-linguistic space that is characterized by rhythm, affectivity, and bodily experiences, disrupting the rigidity of the symbolic order.

In her seminal work "Revolution in Poetic Language" (1974), Kristeva introduces the concept of "Semanalysis," a term that encapsulates her exploration of the semiotic within the symbolic order. Semanalysis, for Kristeva, involves the analysis of the heterogeneous, non-linear, and pre-linguistic aspects of language that resist fixed signification. It is a means of understanding the disruptive and transformative potential of language, particularly in the realm of literature and artistic expression.

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium-Kristeva's engagement with psychoanalytic theory is exemplified in her analysis of the maternal body and its role in the formation of subjectivity. In "Stabat Mater" (1983), she explores the maternal as a powerful semiotic force that disrupts the established symbolic order. The maternal, according to Kristeva, is associated with the chora, representing a form of pre-linguistic communication between the mother and the infant that precedes the imposition of societal norms and language structures. This maternal semiotic, embedded in bodily experiences and affectivity, becomes a crucial element in understanding the formation of subjectivity.

Moreover, Kristeva's concept of "abjection" adds another layer to her psychoanalytic exploration. In "Powers of Horror" (1980), she introduces the notion of abjection as the process through which the subject separates from the maternal body and establishes its own identity. Abjection involves a rejection of the maternal as the subject strives to enter the symbolic order. The abject, for Kristeva, represents the liminal space between the semiotic and the symbolic, encapsulating the discomfort and unease associated with the process of subject formation.

Kristeva's semiotic approach is further elucidated through her analysis of literature, particularly in her exploration of poetic language. Poetic language, according to Kristeva, allows for the expression of the semiotic within the symbolic. In "Desire in Language" (1980), she argues that poetry disrupts conventional linguistic structures, opening a space for the semiotic to emerge. Through the rhythmic and melodic aspects of language, poetry enables a direct engagement with the chora, providing a medium for the expression of repressed and marginalized aspects of subjectivity.

IGNOU MWG 007 Important Questions With Answers English Medium-A key example of Kristeva's semanalysis in literature can be found in her analysis of the works of Marcel Proust. In "Time and Sense: Proust and the Experience of Literature" (1996), Kristeva explores Proust's use of language to evoke sensory experiences and memories. Proust's writing, for Kristeva, exemplifies the semiotic within the symbolic, as the rhythmic and sensory elements of his prose create a bridge between the chora and the structured symbolic order. Through Proust's exploration of involuntary memories and the intricate interplay of senses, Kristeva demonstrates how literature becomes a medium for semanalysis, allowing for the expression of the semiotic within the linguistic and symbolic framework.

Furthermore, Kristeva's application of psychoanalytic theory extends to her engagement with feminist discourse. Her work has been influential in feminist theory, particularly in its exploration of women's subjectivity and the impact of patriarchal structures on language and identity. The maternal, in Kristeva's framework, becomes a complex and multifaceted symbol that challenges traditional gender norms. Her analysis of the maternal as a disruptive semiotic force enables a reevaluation of women's roles beyond conventional societal expectations.

Q.2 Explain Gayle Rubin's conceptualization of Kinship relations and the Sex/gender system with reference to Levi Straus's theory.

Q.3 Write an essay describing the distinctions between Third World Feminism and Black Feminism.

Q.4 "The Positions of Social Constructivist and Essentialist feminists are theoretically irreconcilable." Elaborate.


Q.6 Discuss gender as a category of historical analysis. Describe some specific strategies of refiguring history used by postmodern writers.

Q.7 What is "Magic realism" ? Discuss its significance for postmodern feminist literature with the help of suitable examples.

Q.9 Analyse the relationships between language, gender and identity in the context of postcolonial identities. Use suitable examples from postmodern literature in support of your r

Q.10 Explain Levi Strauss’ views on kinship relations. Discuss how Gayle Rubin approaches Levi Strauss’ work and re-conceptualizes it ?

Q.11 Write an essay on Foucault’s theoretical perspective on power, knowledge and ethics.

Q.12 Distinguish between western mainstreamfeminism and multicultural feminisms fromacross the world, showing how the latter can be related to postmodernism.

Q.13 Analyze the importance of gender as a category of analysis in the context of historical knowledge. Use suitable literary examples to illustrate your discussion.

Q.14 With the help of the work of feminist theorists, explain why the relationship between postmodernism and gender can be labelled as one of duplicity. Explain your own position on this issue.

Q.15 Write an essay on sexuality, power and the subject. Use suitable literary examples to illustrate the relationship between these notions.


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