September 30, 2018

What affect does language have on gendered identities?

Sarah Smart


‘Like A Girl’ is concerned with the crucial role that language plays in shaping our understanding of the external world as well as in developing our sense of selves and place within society. Through the visual language of imagery, representations of women predominantly reflect a social value of feminine beauty. The purpose of this work is to offer alternative role models for women that reflect values beyond that prescribed by the ‘Beauty Myth’. Set against a bold palette these open-source images confront the viewer to consider their social understanding of the female sex and the larger consequences of their misuse of vocabulary. It attempts to reclaim the phrase ‘like a girl’, and strip it from the derogatory associations that it has developed over time, by placing it subversively into the context of these images as a celebration of individuality, diversity, physical strength and determination.